The Ancient Scriptures of IsraEl

Genesis

From the Greek Septuagint text as was used by First Century Christians.
Compiled by Moses, covering the period from the beginning of creation up to the death of JoSeph, which we calculate as happening around 1847-BCE. However, JoSeph is also identified with ImHotep, who served as chancellor to the Third-Dynasty king Djoser, which some date to 2600-BCE, because the record that is written on the Egyptian ‘Famine Stela‘ speaks of a seven-year famine on Egypt and of ImHotep doing the same things that the Bible attributes to JoSeph. But note that the dating for the life of ImHotep appears to be several hundred years earlier than our Bible chronology would suggest for the life of JoSeph. This aberration is likely the result of a historical mis-attribution by those who engraved the stele sometime around the Second Century BCE, priests of the pagan god Khnum,in order to raise the prestige of their gods by attributing the well-known miracles of the time of JoSeph to a more acceptable and famed Egyptian person, ImHotep.

Chapter 1

1 In the beginning, The God created the sky and the land. 2 However, the land was unsightly and unfinished, darkness covered its depths, and God’s Breath moved over its waters. 3 Then God spoke, saying, ‘Let there be light.’ So, light came to be, 4 and God saw that the light was beautiful. Then God brought a division between the light and the darkness. 5 He called the light day and the darkness night. So came the evening and the morning of the first day.

6 And The God spoke, saying, ‘Let there be space between all the waters and a dividing of the waters and the waters.’ And that’s what happened. 7 For God ordered a space to divide the waters that were under the space from the waters that were over the space. 8 God then called that space the sky, and He saw that this was beautiful. So came the evening and the morning of the second day.

9 Then God said, ‘Let the waters under the skies be brought together in one place so the land can be seen.’ And that’s what happened. 10 God called the dry land earth and the collected waters the seas, and God saw that this was beautiful.

11 Then The God spoke, saying, ‘Let the land sprout with pastures of grasses that bear seeds [each] of its own kind and appearance. And let there be fruit trees that bear fruit with its seeds, [each] of its own kind.’ And that’s what happened. 12 The ground sprouted with pastures of grasses that [each] bore seeds of its own kind and appearance, and the fruit trees bore fruit with their seeds, [each] of its own kind, upon the land. And God saw that this was beautiful. 13 So came the evening and the morning of the third day.

14 Then The God spoke, saying, ‘Let there be lights in the heavenly space to illuminate the ground to make the division between day and night, and to serve as signs for the seasons, days, and years. 15 Let them serve as sources of light in the skies to shine upon the ground.’ And that’s what happened. 16 God made the two huge lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light and stars to rule the night. 17 And God assigned them space in the sky to shine upon the earth, 18 to dominate the days and nights, and to make the divisions between light and darkness. And God saw that it was beautiful. 19 So came the evening and the morning of the fourth day.

20 And The God spoke, saying, ‘Let the waters give birth to living, slithering animals, as well as to winged creatures that will fly above the earth in the space of the skies.’ And that’s what happened. 21 Then God created the great sea creatures and all the living, slithering animals that live in the water, according to their types, and all the feathered flying creatures, according to their types; and God saw that it was beautiful. 22 So God blest them, saying, ‘Reproduce and multiply in the water until you fill the seas, and let the winged creatures multiply on the earth.’ 23 Thus came the evening and the morning of the fifth day.

24 Then The God spoke, saying, ‘Let the land give birth to living animals, each of its own kind… four-footed animals, slithering animals, and wild animals of the ground, each of its own kind.’ And that’s what happened. 25 Then God made the wild animals of the ground (each of its own kind), the herding animals (each of its own kind) and all the earth’s slithering animals (each of its own kind). And God saw that they were beautiful.

26 Then The God spoke, saying, ‘Let us make men in our image and like us, so that they will rule the creatures in the seas, the winged creatures of the skies, the herding animals of the ground, and all the slithering animals that crawl on the ground.’

27 So, The God created mankind (gr. anthropon). He created mankind in the image of the Gods as a male and a female. 28 Then God blest them, saying, ‘Reproduce and multiply… fill the earth and control it. Rule over the sea creatures, the winged creatures of the skies, all the herding animals of the ground, all the slithering animals that crawl on the ground, and the whole earth.’

29 Then The God said, ‘Look, I’ve given you all the seed-bearing plants upon the entire earth to plant, as well as all the seed-bearing trees to plant as your food. 30 And [I’ve given] greenish-yellow plants as food for all the earth’s wild animals, all the winged creatures of the skies, and all the slithering animals that crawl on the ground and have the breath of life.’ And that’s what happened.

31 Then The God viewed everything that He had made, and {Look!} it was very beautiful. So came the evening and the morning of the sixth day.

Chapter 2

1 So the skies and the lands were complete, as was all the arranging of them. 2 God finished the work that He did on the sixth day, and on the seventh day He rested from all the works that He did. 3 Then God blest the seventh day and made it holy, because He’d finished all the work that He started out to do.

4 This was the scroll of the origins of the sky and the land, and of when they came to be in the day that The God spoke the sky and the land, 5 as well as when all the greenish-yellow plants for it began on the ground and all the grasses of the fields grew from it. And since Jehovah God had not yet provided rain on the earth and there were no men to cultivate it, 6 springs poured from the ground and watered the entire surface of the land.

7 Then The God formed the man from the dust of the ground, breathed the breath of life against his face, and He became a living creature.

8 And thereafter, God planted a Paradise on the east side of Edem, where He put the man whom he had formed. 9 And it was there that God caused every tree that was attractive to look at and worthy as food to spring from the ground. [He also] put the Tree of Life in the middle of the Paradise, as well as the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

10 A river flowed out of Edem to water the Paradise, and from there [came the] head [waters] of four [rivers]. 11 The name of the [first river] is Phison. It encircles the entire land of Evilat, where there is gold 12 (and the gold from that land is good), as well as coal and ornamental stone. 13 The name of the second river is Geon. It runs around the land of Kush. 14 The third river is the Tigris. It flows over toward the Assyrians. And the fourth river is the EuPhrates.

15 Then Jehovah God took the man that He had formed and put him in the Paradise of Delights so He could cultivate it and care for it. 16 And Jehovah God gave these instructions to Adam: ‘You are free to eat from all the trees of Paradise, 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Because, on whatever day you eat from it, your life will end and you will die.’

18 And Jehovah God said: ‘It isn’t good for the man to be alone, so let’s make a helper for him.’

19 Well, after God had made all the wild animals of the plains and all the winged creatures of the skies (from the [dirt]), He brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living animal was what its name became. 20 So Adam named all the cattle, all the winged creatures of the skies, and all the wild animals of the plains. Yet, a suitable helper that was like Adam couldn’t be found.

21 God then put Adam into a trance, and while he was sleeping, took one of his ribs and filled the place where it was with flesh. 22 Then God built the rib that He took from Adam into a woman and brought her to Adam. 23 And Adam said, ‘This is now bone from my bones and flesh from my flesh. She will be called woman, because she was taken from man. 24 And because of this, a man will leave his father and mother and bond with his woman, and the two will become one flesh.’

Chapter 3

1 [At the time], both of them (the man and the woman) were naked and unashamed.

2 Then the snake (which was the wiliest of the animals that Jehovah had made on the earth) asked the woman, ‘Why did God tell you that you shouldn’t eat from all of the trees in the Paradise?’

3 And the woman replied to the snake: ‘We can eat the fruit from the trees of Paradise, but God said that we shouldn’t eat the fruit from the tree in the middle of Paradise – that we shouldn’t even touch it – or we will die.’

4 Then the snake told the woman: ‘You won’t stop living and die, 5 for God knows that on whatever day you eat from it your eyes will be opened wide and you will be like gods knowing good and evil.’

6 Well, the woman saw that the tree was worthy as food, it was a pleasant sight to her eyes, and it was a beautiful thing to think about. So after picking its fruit, she ate it. Then she gave some to her man (who was with her), and they ate it [together]. 7 And thereafter, the eyes of both of them were opened wide and they realized that they were naked. So they sewed fig leaves together and made skirts to go around themselves.

8 Then they heard the voice of Jehovah God as He walked around in Paradise at dusk; so Adam and his woman hid from the face of Jehovah God among the trees in the Paradise.

9 So Jehovah God called to Adam, saying, ‘Where are you Adam?’

10 And [Adam] replied to God: ‘I heard Your voice as You were walking through Paradise, but I was afraid because of my nakedness, so I hid myself.’

11 Then God asked him: ‘If you haven’t eaten from the only tree that I commanded you not to eat from; then, who told you that you were naked?’

12 And Adam replied: ‘It was this woman that You gave me as a companion… she gave me some [fruit] from the tree, and I ate it.’

13 Then Jehovah God asked the woman: ‘Why did you do this?’

And the woman replied: ‘The snake deceived me, so I ate it.’

14 Then Jehovah God said to the snake: ‘Because you did this; among all the cattle and wild animals of the earth, you [alone] are doomed to be punished. Therefore, you will now travel on your chest and belly and you will have to eat from the ground all the days of your life. 15 I’m going to create hatred between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed. So he will watch for your head and you will watch for his heel.’

16 Then He said to the woman: ‘I will now make your sorrow and moaning [much] worse, for when you give birth to children, you will groan. You must also submit to your man and he will dominate you.’

17 Then He said to Adam: ‘Because you listened to your woman’s voice and ate from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from (and from which you went ahead and ate), the work that you will do on the ground is cursed, and you will groan as you eat from it all the days of your life. 18 Briars and thistles will grow for you, and your food will be the grasses in the fields. 19 You will eat your bread through the sweat on your face until you return to the ground from which you were taken… yes, you were taken from the ground and that’s where you will return!’

20 And thereafter, Adam called his woman’s name Life, because she was the mother of all [human] life.

21 Then Jehovah God made leather clothing for Adam and his woman, and dressed them in it.

22 Then God said, ‘Look, Adam has become one of us now in knowing good and evil!’ Therefore, to prevent him from reaching out to pick and eat from the Tree of Life so as to gain age-long life, 23 Jehovah God put Adam outside of the Paradise of Delights, where he had to work the ground from which he was taken. 24 He drove Adam out and made him live next to the Paradise of Delights. Then He stationed the [heavenly] cherubs with their flaming, spinning swords to guard the way to the Tree of Life.

Chapter 4

1 Well thereafter, Adam had [sexual relations] with Eue, his woman, so she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain. And she said, ‘I have gained a man through God.’ 2 Then she again gave birth to his brother, Abel. Abel [grew up to be] a herder of sheep, while Cain worked the ground.

3 Then after many days, Cain brought some of the fruit of the ground as an offering to Jehovah, 4 while Abel brought the first-born of his sheep and his belongings. Well, God looked favorably upon Abel and his gifts, 5 but He paid no attention to Cain and his sacrifices, which made Cain very sad, and his face [reflected] this. 6 So Jehovah God asked Cain: ‘Why are you so sad and why is your face so long? 7 For, even if you didn’t bring righteously, you didn’t sin by sharing. Overlook this, because [Abel] will submit to you and you will [rule] over him!’

8 But thereafter, Cain said to his brother Abel: ‘Let’s go out into the fields.’ Then, while they were in their fields, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him.

9 And when Jehovah God asked Cain, ‘Where is your brother?’ he replied, ‘I don’t know… I’m not my brother’s keeper!’

10 Then Jehovah God asked, ‘What have you done? I hear the blood of your brother calling out to Me from the ground! 11 Therefore, you will now be cursed by the ground, which has opened her mouth wide to [drink] the blood of your brother from your hand. 12 So when you work the ground, it will [no longer] give you its strength, and you will groan and tremble on the earth.’

13 Then Cain told Jehovah God: ‘My crime is too great to be forgiven. 14 So if you [drive me] away from Your face and the face of this land today, I will have to hide, groaning and trembling on the land… for anyone who finds me will kill me!’

15 And Jehovah God replied: ‘That isn’t so! For whoever kills Cain will pay seven penalties.’ Then Jehovah God put a mark on Cain so that nobody that found him would kill him. 16 And thereafter, Cain left the presence of God and lived in Nod, which also borders Edem.

17 There, Cain [had sex] with his woman and she became pregnant, giving birth to Enoch. [Then Cain] built a city, which he named after his son, Enoch. 18 Enoch fathered GaiDad; GaiDad fathered MalaleEl; MalaleEl fathered MethuSelah; and MethuSelah fathered Lamech. 19 Then Lamech took two women; the first was Ada and the second was SelLa. 20 Ada gave birth to JoBel, who was the ancestor of those who lived in tents and herded cattle. 21 He had a brother named JuBal, who invented the lute and the harp. 22 SelLa also gave birth to ThoBel, who worked iron and brass. And he had a sister named NoEma.

23 Then Lamech told his women (Ada and SelLa): ‘Listen to me, [my] women! Remember this: I have killed a man who wounded me… a young man who whipped me. 24 So if the vengeance [for killing] Cain was seven punishments; mine will be seven times that.’

25 Well, Adam [again had sex with] his woman Eue and she became pregnant, giving birth to a son whom she named Seth. For she said: ‘God has [provided me with] another son to replace Abel, who was murdered by Cain.’

26 Then Seth had a son whom he named Enos, who hoped to call upon the Name Jehovah, The God.

 

Chapter 5

1 This was the scroll of the early [days] of mankind, when God fathered Adam, forming him in [His] image. 2 He created the male and the female and He blest them. And in the day that He created him, He named him Adam.

3 Adam was two hundred and thirty years old when he fathered a son who was just like him and looked like him, that he named Seth. 4 Then after fathering Seth, Adam lived on for seven hundred years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 5 So Adam was nine hundred and thirty years old when he died.

6 Now, Seth was two hundred and five years old when he fathered Enos. 7 And after fathering Enos, he lived on for seven hundred and seven years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 8 So Seth was nine hundred and twelve years old when he died.

9 Enos was a hundred and ninety years old when he fathered Kainan. 10 Then after fathering Kainan, he lived on for another seven hundred and fifteen years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 11 So Enos was nine hundred and five years old when he died.

12 Kainan was a hundred and seventy years old when he fathered MaleLeal. 13 Then after fathering MaleLeal, he lived on for some seven hundred and forty years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 14 So Kainan was nine hundred and ten years old when he died.

15 MaleLeal was a hundred and sixty five years old when he fathered Jared. 16 And after fathering Jared, he lived on for seven hundred and thirty years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 17 So MaleLeal was eight hundred and ninety-five years old when he died.

18 Jared was a hundred and sixty-two years old when he fathered Enoch. 19 Then after fathering Enoch, he lived on for another eight hundred years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 20 So Jared was nine hundred and sixty-two years old when he died.

21 Enoch was a hundred and sixty-five years old when he fathered MethuSelah. 22 Well, after fathering MethuSelah, God found Enoch righteous; and he lived on for some two hundred years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 23 Then (when Enoch was three hundred and sixty-five years old), 24 because he pleased God, God transported him and he disappeared.

25 MethuSelah was a hundred and eighty-seven years old when he fathered Lamech. 26 Then after fathering Lamech, he lived on for another seven hundred and eighty-two years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 27 So MethuSelah was nine hundred and sixty-nine years old when he died.

28 Lamech was a hundred and eighty-eight years old when he fathered a son 29 whom he named Noah. And he said: ‘He will stop us from doing the things that we are doing, from working with our hands, and from [living on] the ground that Jehovah has cursed. 30 Then after fathering Noah, he lived on for some five hundred and sixty-five years, as he fathered other sons and daughters. 31 So Lamech was seven hundred and fifty-three years old when he died.

32 Then after Noah was five hundred years old, he fathered three sons; Shem, Ham, and JaPheth.

Chapter 6

1 Now, as the population of men grew on the earth and they fathered daughters, 2 the sons of The God noticed that the daughters of men were beautiful; so they took all whom they chose as their women.

3 Then Jehovah God said: ‘There’s no way that My Breath will stay with these men. They’re [just] flesh, so their [lives] will last just one hundred and twenty [more] years.’

4 Well, there were giants on the earth back in those days; for after that, the sons of The God continued to [had sex] with the daughters of mankind and fathered [children] for themselves who became the giants and the famous men of that age. 5 And Jehovah God saw that the badness of the mankind was getting much worse on the earth… for the things they thought of in their hearts each day was just twisted toward evil. 6 And God was disturbed (gr. enethumethe) about His creating mankind on the earth; so He shook His head (dienoethe) 7 and declared: ‘I will wipe the people that I made off the face of the earth… the people, the cattle, and the winged creatures of the skies, for I’m sorry that I made them.’ 8 However, Noah found mercy in the eyes of The God, Jehovah.

9 This is the account of Noah’s generation:

Noah was a righteous man… perfect [when compared to] that generation, for Noah pleased God well. 10 Then he fathered three sons; Shem, Ham, and JaPheth.

11 As God saw it, the land had become unclean and the earth was filled with unrighteousness. 12 So when Jehovah God looked at the earth, all He saw was corruption, because all flesh had become corrupt in its ways. 13 Then Jehovah God told Noah: ‘A season is now before me [that will lead to the end of] all mankind, because the earth is filled with their unrighteousness. Look! I’m going to lay waste to them and to the whole earth! 14 So, [you must] make a chest of squared timbers for yourself and [divide the] chest into stalls, then cover both the inside and outside of it with tar.

15 ‘This is how you should build the chest: [Make it] five hundred feet long, eighty feet wide, and fifty feet tall. 16 You must also make a roof that is about twenty-inches thick, and put a door in the side of the chest… make a bottom floor, a second floor, and a third floor. 17 [For after it’s completed], {Look!} I’m going to bring a downpour of water upon the ground to destroy all flesh under the skies that has the breath of life, so all that is on the ground will end. 18 Then I will establish a Sacred Agreement between you and Me.’

19 ‘[I want you to] bring all [types of] cattle, slithering creatures, and wild animals – all [types of] flesh – into the chest by pairs of males and females. Then bring in food for them and for yourselves. 20 They should all eat with you, both the males and the females… all types of winged creatures, all types of cattle, and all varieties of slithering animals that crawl along the ground. 21 Also, gather all types of food for yourselves, so that you will each have something to eat.’

22 And Noah did everything that Jehovah God told him to do.

Chapter 7

1 Then Jehovah God said to Noah: ‘Now you and your family must enter the chest, because I have found [just] you to be righteous among this generation. 2 Take the clean cattle in with you by sevens (males and females), and bring in pairs of unclean cattle (males and females). 3 [Do the same with] the winged creatures of the sky… bring in the clean ones by sevens (males and females) and [just] pairs of all the unclean winged creatures (males and females), so their seed will remain on the earth. 4 For in just seven days I will bring rain to the ground [that will last for] forty days and forty nights, and I will blot out every creature that I’ve made from the face of the entire earth!’

5 Then Noah did everything that Jehovah God commanded him to do.

6 Noah was six hundred years old when the Downpour of waters started on the earth. 7 Then Noah, his woman, his sons, and their women went into the chest with him (because of the downpour of water). 8 And the clean winged creatures, the unclean winged creatures, the clean cattle, the unclean cattle, and all the wild animals, as well as all the things that crawl on the ground 9 came to Noah and entered the chest in pairs of males and females, just as God had commanded Noah. 10 Then after seven days, the water of the Downpour came to the earth.

11 It was in the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, on the twenty-seventh day of the second month, that all the springs under the ground broke open, and the floodgates of the skies were opened. 12 Then it rained on the earth for forty days and forty nights. 13 It started on the very day that Noah, his woman, Shem, Ham, JaPheth (the sons of Noah and his woman) and their three women went into the chest with him.

14 Also, all the wild animals (each of its kind), all the cattle (each of its kind), all the slithering animals that move on the earth (each of its kind), 15 and all the winged creatures (each of its kind) went inside the chest to Noah in pairs of males and females… everything that had the breath of life. 16 Males and females of all flesh went inside, just as God had commanded Noah; then Jehovah God closed the chest from the outside.

17 Thereafter, the Downpour continued on the earth for forty days and forty nights, and the water got so deep that it lifted the chest high above the ground. 18 The water dominated and totally covered the land, and the chest was carried along on top of the water. 19 For the water dominated and covered even the tallest mountains under the whole sky… 20 it covered the highest mountains by at least twenty-five feet.

21 So every moving thing on the earth died… all the men, winged creatures, cattle, wild animals, and all the slithering animals that moved across the ground. 22 Everything that lived on the land and had the breath of life, died. 23 God blotted out all His creatures on the face of the earth… the men, the animals, the winged creatures, and the slithering animals. He blotted them off of the earth. The only ones that remained were Noah and those who were with him in the chest. 24 Altogether, the water covered the land for a hundred and fifty days.

Chapter 8

1 But God didn’t forget Noah or any of the wild animals, cattle, winged creatures, or crawling, slithering animals that were inside the chest. So God sent a wind to the earth that stopped the water… 2 for the springs that were under the ground closed and the floodgates of the skies and the rain from the skies were held back. 3 Then the water level started to drop, flowing off the ground. And after a hundred and fifty days, the water lowered, and the chest came to rest on Mount Ararat on the twenty-seventh day of the seventh month. 4 Well, the water levels kept dropping through the tenth month, 5 and on the first day of the tenth month, they could see the mountaintops.

6 Then after forty days, Noah opened the window that he had made in the chest, and he sent out a crow, which left and didn’t return until the water had abated. 7 So it left and it did not return until the water had dried off the ground. 8 Then after that, he sent out a dove to see if the earth was still flooded. 9 But the dove couldn’t find a place to rest its feet, because the water was still covering all the ground, and it returned to the chest. So [Noah] stuck out his hand to take [the dove], and brought it to himself inside the chest.

10 Well, a week later, he sent the dove out from the chest once again. 11 And that evening, the dove returned to him with a stem and leaf from an olive tree in its beak. That’s when Noah knew [for sure] that the water had left the ground. 12 But he continued to wait another week before he released the dove once more. However, this time it didn’t return at all.

13 So by the six hundred and first year of Noah’s life, on the first day of the first month, the water had poured off the ground. Then Noah opened the roof that he had made for the chest, and he could see that the water had drained from the ground; 14 and by the twenty-second day of the second month, the ground was dry.

15 Then Jehovah God spoke to Noah and said, 16 ‘Come out of the chest… you, your woman, your sons, their women who are with you, 17 and all the wild animals that are with you. Bring out all the flesh that is with you – the winged creatures, the cattle, and the slithering animals that move on the ground – [so that they can] reproduce and multiply on the earth.’

18 So Noah, his woman, his sons, and his son’s women who were with him, came out. 19 And all the wild animals, all the cattle, all the winged creatures, and all the slithering animals that crawl on the ground (according to their kinds) came out of the chest.

20 Then Noah built an altar to Jehovah, and he took some of the clean animals, as well as some from among all the clean winged creatures, and offered them whole… burning them on the altar. 21 And as Jehovah noticed the sweet smell, He thought about it and said, ‘I will never curse the ground again for the bad things that men do, because the imagination of men is totally bent toward doing bad things from the time they are young. Also, will I ever again [destroy] all living flesh as I have just done. 22 Then for all the days of the earth, the seed time and harvesting, the heat and the cold, the spring and the summer, and the days and nights will never be brought to an end.’

Chapter 9

1 Thereafter, God blest Noah and his sons and told them: ‘Now, reproduce and multiply… fill the earth and rule over it. 2 For all the wild animals of the earth, all the winged creatures in the skies, and everything that moves on the ground (including all the creatures in the seas) will have a dread and fear of you. For I have put you in charge over all of them.

3 ‘Also, all the living and slithering animals can serve as meat for you… I have given them all to you as though they were green vegetation. 4 But you must not eat their flesh with its blood of life, 5 or I will require your blood at the hand of all those wild animals. I will also require a man’s life at the hands of his brothers… 6 for whoever spills the blood of mankind will also have his blood spilled, since I made mankind in the image of God. 7 Now, reproduce and multiply… fill the earth and rule over it!’

8 Then God spoke to Noah and his sons who were with him and said: 9 ‘Look; I am making a promise between you and Me, [as well as] with your seed [that will come] after you 10 and with every living thing (the winged creatures, the [domesticated] animals, and all the wild animals of the earth)… with all that are with you and came out of the chest. 11 This is My promise to you and to all flesh: I will never again send a downpour of water to kill all flesh, and never again will I send a downpour to destroy the whole earth.’

12 Then God said to Noah: ‘This is the sign of the Agreement that I have established between you and Me through ages of generations, as well as with every living creature that is with you: 13 I have put My bow in the clouds, which will serve as the sign of the Agreement between the earth and Me, 14 so that whenever I gather clouds over the earth, My bow will be seen in those clouds, 15 and this will remind Me of My agreement between you and Me, and with every living creature and all flesh, that never again will I send a downpour of water that will blot out all flesh. 16 My bow will be there in the clouds, and when I see it, I will remember the age-long agreement between Me and the earth, as well as with every living creature among all the flesh that is on the earth.’ 17 And God said to Noah: ‘Yes, this is the sign of the Agreement that I made with all flesh that is on the earth and Myself.’

18 Now, the sons of Noah (who came out of the chest) were [named] Shem, Ham, and JaPheth (Ham was the father of CanaAn). 19 And it was from these three sons of Noah that men came to be scattered over the whole earth.

20 Thereafter, Noah took up farming and he planted some grapes. 21 [Then, one day], Noah was drinking some wine while he was naked in his house, and he got drunk. 22 Meanwhile, Ham (CanaAn’s father) saw his father’s nakedness, and he went outside and told his brothers about it. 23 Then Shem and JaPheth grabbed a robe, put it over their backs, and walked backward to cover their father’s naked body. And because they were looking away, they didn’t see their father’s nakedness.

24 Well, after Noah recovered from the wine, he realized what his son had done to him. 25 So he said: ‘The servant CanaAn is cursed, and he will be a slave to his brothers.’ 26 Then he added: ‘May Jehovah (the God of Shem) bless him… but let CanaAn be his houseboy. 27 Yes, may God make room for JaPheth and allow him to live in the tents of Shem… and may CanaAn become his.’

28 Well after the Downpour, Noah lived on for another three hundred and fifty years. 29 So he lived for nine hundred and fifty years, and then he died.

Chapter 10

1 Now, these are the generations of the sons of Noah: Shem, Ham, and JaPheth. And these are the sons that were born to them after the Downpour:

2 JaPheth’s sons were Gamer, Magog [the Scythians], Madoi [the Medes], Jovan, EliSa, Thobel [of Tubal], Mosoch [possibly Moscow of Russia], and Thiras [Islands of the Aegean Sea].

3 Gamer’s sons were AshKenaz [Germans], Riphath [of Northwestern Asia Minor], and Thorgama [the Armenians].

4 Jovan’s sons were EliShah [of Tyre], TarShish [of Spain], Cetian [of Cypress], and Rhodes [of Rhodes]… 5 [they settled the] islands, which lands were divided by tribe and nation among the ethnics, each according to his own language.

6 Ham’s sons were Kush [blacks], Mesrain [Egyptian tribes], Phud [Libyans], and CanaAn [Palestinians].

7 The sons of Kush were Saba [other blacks of southern Africa], Evilat, Sabatha, Rhegma, and Sabathaca [East Africans].

The sons of Rhegma were Saba [of thirteen Arabian Tribes], and Dadan [part of Arabia].

8 Kush fathered Nimrod, who became a giant on the earth. 9 He was a gigantic hunter before Jehovah God, and that’s why people speak of Nimrod as ‘the gigantic hunter before Jehovah.’ 10 His kingdom started with Babylon and ran to Orech, Archad, and ChalanNe, which were all in the land of Shinar. 11 Then outside of that land, [he went to] Assyria and built Nineveh, the cities of RehobOth, Chalach, 12 and Dase (between Nineveh, and Chalach), which is the great city.

13 Mesrain fathered the Lydim [Lydians], the MaphTuhim [people of Memphis, Egypt], the AnaMim [Libyans], the Lehabim [people of Lower Egypt], 14 the Pathrusim [people of Upper Egypt], the Casluhim [Cretans] (from whom the Philistines descended), and the GaphThoriim [also from the area of Crete].

15 CanaAn’s first-born son was Sidon. Then there were the Hittites, 16 the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, 17 the Hevites, the Arukites, the Sinites [Chinese?], the Asenites, 18 the Aradians, the Samarians [Northern Lebanon], and the Hamathites. But the CanaAnites were scattered, 19 so their territory ran from Sidon to Gerar (near Gaza), to Sodom and GomorRah, to Adama and to Seboim, as far as Dasa.

20 These were the descendants of Ham by tribe, country, language, and nation.

21 Shem, who was the elder brother of JaPheth and the ancestor of all the sons of Heber, also had children born to him. 22 His sons were Elam, Assur, Arphaxad, Lud, Aram, and Kainan.

23 Aram’s sons were Uz, Ul, Gater, and Mosoch.

24 Arphaxad fathered [a son whom he named] Kainan, who fathered Sala, who fathered [a son he named] Heber. 25 This Heber had two sons. He named the first Phaled (Division), because the land became divided in his day, and his brother’s name was JekTan.

26 JekTan fathered ElModad, Saleth, SarMoth, Jarach, 27 OdorRha, AiBel, Decla, 28 Eval, AbiMaEl, Saba, 29 Uphir, Evila, and Jobab. These were all the sons of JekTan. 30 Their territory ran from MasSe all the way to Saphera, which is a mountain in the east.

31 These were the sons of Shem by tribe, language, country, and nation, 32 and these were the tribes of the sons of Noah by generations and nations. From them came the people of all the islands and nations that were scattered around the earth after the Downpour.

Chapter 11

1 [At the time], the whole earth shared the same lips, because they all spoke the same language. 2 And as they migrated from the east, they found a flat area of land in Shinar, and started living there. 3 Then one man said to his neighbor: ‘Come on, let’s make some bricks and bake them in an oven.’ So, bricks became their stone and tar served as their mortar.

4 And they said: ‘Come on; let’s build ourselves a city with a tower that reaches into the sky. And let’s create a name for ourselves, before we end up being scattered all over the face of the earth.’

5 Then Jehovah came down to see this city and its tower that the sons of men had built. 6 And the Lord said: ‘Look; they’re all the same race and they share the same lips… and now they’ve started doing this. [Why, before long], they’ll be able to accomplish anything they set out to do. 7 So, let’s go down there and change their language so no one will be able to understand the voice of his neighbor.’

8 And Jehovah scattered them from there over the entire face of the earth, so they stopped building the city and its tower. 9 That is why [the city] is named Confusion (Babylon), because, that’s where Jehovah confused all the languages of the earth and scattered them from there over all the face of the earth.

10 These are the generations of Shem:
Shem was a hundred years old when he became father to Arphaxad in the second year after the Downpour. 11 And after Shem became father to Arphaxad, he lived three hundred and thirty five more years (fathering other sons and daughters), and then he died. 12 Arphaxad was a hundred and thirty-five years old when became father to Kainan. 13 And after Arphaxad became the father to Kainan, he lived three hundred and thirty years more (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. Kainan was a hundred and thirty years old when he became father to Sala. And after he became father to Sala, he lived three hundred and thirty years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died.

14 Sala was a hundred and thirty years old when he became father to Heber. 15 And after he became father to Heber, he lived three hundred and thirty years more (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. 16 Heber was a hundred and thirty-four years old when he became father to Phaleg. 17 And after he became father to Phaleg, he lived two hundred and seventy years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. 18 Phaleg was a hundred and thirty years old when he became father to Ragau. 19 After he became father to Ragau, he lived two hundred and nine years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. 20 Ragau was a hundred and thirty-two years old when he became father to Seruch. 21 After he became father to Seruch, he lived two hundred and seven years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died.

22 Seruch was a hundred and thirty years old when he became father to NaHor. 23 And after he became father to NaHor, he lived two hundred years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. 24 NaHor was seventy-nine years old when he became father to Terah. 25 And after he became father to Terah, he lived a hundred and twenty-nine years (as he fathered other sons and daughters), and then he died. 26 After Terah was seventy years old, he became father to Abram, NaHor, and Haran.

27 These are the generations of Terah:
Terah became father to Abram, NaHor, and Haran; and Haran became father to Lot. 28 Haran died in the presence of Terah his father in the land where he was born, the country of the Chaldeans.

29 Both Abram and NaHor took women for themselves. Abram’s woman was named Sara, and NaHor’s woman was named Malcha. She was the daughter of Haran (the father of Malcha and Jescha). 30 However, Sara was sterile, so she didn’t have any children.

31 Then Terah took his son Abram, Abram’s woman Sara (his daughter-in-law), and his grandson Lot (the son of Haran), and carried them from the land of the Chaldeans toward the land of CanaAn. But when they got to Haran, they took up living there. 32 Terah continued living in the land of Haran for two hundred and five years, and [that is where] he died.

Chapter 12

1 Then Jehovah said to Abram: ‘Leave this land, as well as your family and your father’s home, and go to a land that I will to show you, 2 because I’m going to make a great nation of you. I will bless you, make your name famous, and you will become a blessing [to others]. 3 I will bless those who praise you and curse those who curse you… all tribes will be blest because of you.’

4 So Abram did just as Jehovah told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he left Haran, 5 taking along his woman Sara, his nephew Lot, all the many things that they owned, and all the souls that they had accumulated in Haran, as they traveled to the land of CanaAn. 6 Abram traveled down through the land as far as a place called Shechem, where there was a tall tree. And at the time, the CanaAnites were living in the land.

7 Then the Lord appeared to Abram and said: ‘I will give this land to your seed.’ So Abram built an altar there to the Lord who had appeared to him.

8 Then he moved on from there to a mountain that was east of BethEl, and he pitched his tent near BethEl, close to the sea, east of AgGai. There he built an altar to Jehovah and started calling on the Name of the Lord. 9 Then Abram left from there and camped in the desert.

10 Well, there came a famine in the land, so Abram went down to Egypt to stay, because the famine had devastated the land. 11 And as Abram was about to enter Egypt, he said to his woman Sara: ‘You’re a beautiful woman, 12 [and I’m afraid] that when the Egyptians see you they’ll say, [Look at] his woman, and they’ll kill me… but they will allow you to live. 13 So, tell people that you’re my sister. That way, things will go well for me because of you, and my life will be safe because of you.’

14 And that’s what happened; when Abram entered Egypt and the Egyptians saw how beautiful his woman was, 15 one of Pharaoh’s princes praised her to Pharaoh (likely Pepi II) and brought her into Pharaoh’s [Palace]. 16 And because of her, Pharaoh treated Abram very well. So he accumulated [many] sheep, calves, burros, male and female servants, mules, and camels.

17 However, God cursed Pharaoh and his house with some very serious and difficult problems because of Sara (Abram’s woman). 18 So Pharaoh called Abram and asked, ‘What have you done to me? You didn’t tell me that she’s your woman. 19 Why did you tell us that she’s your sister? Look, I’ve already taken her as mine! Now, there’s your woman standing before you… she’s yours, so take her and leave quickly!’

20 Then Pharaoh gave his men instructions about Abram, telling them to accompany him and his woman on their way, along with all the things that they owned.

Chapter 13

1 So Abram left Egypt along with his woman, Lot, and everything that he owned, and they traveled into the desert 2 (by then, Abram had become very rich in cattle, silver, and gold). 3 So he returned to the place where he had come from (in the desert near BethEl, between BethEl and AgGai, where he had pitched his tent previously), 4 to the place where he had earlier built the altar and 5 where he (Abram) had called on the Name of the Lord.

6 Lot (who had left [Egypt] along with Abram) had also accumulated many sheep, oxen, and tents; 7 so the land just wasn’t large enough for both of them to live together, because of their many possessions. 8 And since there wasn’t enough land to share, there were problems between the herdsmen of Abram’s cattle, the herdsmen of Lot’s cattle, and with the CanaAnites and Pherezites who lived in that land. So Abram said to Lot: ‘There shouldn’t be problems between you and me, or between my herdsmen and your herdsmen, because we are brothers. 9 Look; the whole land lies before you, so leave me and choose your own way. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; or if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.’

10 So Lot surveyed all the country around the JorDan and noticed that it had plenty of water (this was before God overthrew Sodom and GomorRah). It looked like the Paradise of Jehovah and like the land of Egypt up to Zogora. 11 So Lot chose all the country around the JorDan for himself and he traveled to the east, as the brothers parted ways.

Now, as Abram took up living in the land of CanaAn, 12 Lot [chose] to live in a city among neighbors; so he moved to Sodom. 13 However, the men of Sodom were evil and they were sinning before God.

14 Then God said to Abram (after Lot had separated from him): ‘Look around at this place where you’re standing… look to the north, to the south, to the east, and to the sea. 15 I will give all this land that you see before you, to you and your seed through the ages. 16 And I will make your seed like the dust of the ground. Why, if anyone is able to count all the dust of the earth, he should be able to count your seed. 17 Get up and walk across the land… across its length and its breadth. I’m giving it all to you and to your seed through the ages!’

18 So Abram packed up his tent and took up living by the big tree of MamRe in HebRon, and he built an altar there to Jehovah.

Chapter 14

1 It was during the reign of AmarPhal (the king of Shinar) and AriOch (the king of ElLasar), that ChodolLogomor 2 (the king of Elam) and Thargal (the king of the Gentiles) went to war with BalLa (the king of Sodom), BarSa (the king of GomorRah), Sennaar (the king of Adama), SymoBor (the king of Seboim), and Balac (or Segor). 3 So they all agreed to meet together at the Salt Valley (which is now the Dead Sea). 4 They had served as vassals to ChodolLogomor for some twelve years, but in the thirteenth year they revolted.

5 So in the fourteenth year, ChodolLogomor and his allies attacked them, cutting to pieces the giants in AshtarOth CarNain, along with the strong nations that were their allies (the OmMeans in the city of Saue and 6 the ChorRheans in the mountains of Seir) all the way to the turpentine trees of Pharan (in the desert). 7 And on their return, they stopped at the Well of Judgment (Cades), where they cut to pieces all the princes of Amalecites and the Amorites who were living in AsaSonThamar.

8 And then the kings of Sodom, GomorRah, Adama, Seboim, and Balac (or Segor) went out and set up battle lines against them in the Salt Valley 9 – against ChodolLogomor (king of Elam), Thargal (king of the Gentiles), AmarPhal (king of Shinar), and AriOch (the king of ElLasar) – the four against five.

10 Now, there were slime pits in the Salt Valley, and the kings of Sodom and GomorRah fled and fell into them, as the rest retreated into the mountains. 11 So [the invaders] took all the horses and food in Sodom and GomorRah and they left, 12 carrying away Abram’s nephew Lot (who lived in Sodom), along with all his possessions.

13 Then one of those who had been rescued went and told Abram (the Hebrew) [what had happened], as he was living by the large tree [belonging to] MamRe. ([MamRe] was an Amorite, the brother of Eschol and Aunan (who were Abram’s allies). 14 And when Abram heard that his nephew Lot had been captured, he gathered three hundred and eighteen of his personal home-born servants, and pursued them all the way to Dan. 15 Then when he and his servants caught up with them that night, he attacked them and pursued them all the way to Choba, which is to the left of Damascus. 16 So he recovered all the horses of Sodom, his nephew Lot and all of possessions and women, as well as the rest of the people.

17 Then after [Abram] returned from the slaughter of ChodolLogomor and the kings that were with him; the king of Sodom went out to the valley of Saby (the Plain of the King) to meet with him. 18 And there, MelchiZedek (the king of Salem) brought him some loaves [of bread] and some wine. He was the Priest of the Most High God, 19 and he blest Abram, saying: ‘May Abram of the Most High God who made the heavens and the earth, be blest. 20 And may the Most High God who delivered your enemies into your hands be praised.’

Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything [he had captured].

21 And the king of Sodom said to Abram: ‘Let me take all the men… you can keep the horses for yourself.’

22 But Abram said to the king of Sodom: ‘I swear by Jehovah, the Most High God who made the heavens and the earth, 23 that I won’t take anything from you – not so much as a piece of string or a shoe lace – so you won’t be able to say, I’m the one who made Abram wealthy. 24 [I will take] nothing other than what the young men have eaten and the share that belongs to the men who went with me, Eschol, Aunan, and MamRe… they will each take a portion.’

Chapter 15

1 Well after that, Jehovah sent word to Abram in a vision, saying, ‘Don’t be afraid, Abram; for I am your shield and you will have a huge reward.’

2 Then Abram said: ‘O Almighty Jehovah; What can You give me, since I’m about to die without a son? EliEzer of Damascus, the home-born son of my [slave girl] Masek of Damascus, is my heir.’ 3 And Abram continued: ‘I’m so very sad, because You haven’t given me a seed, and the home-born [of my slave girl] will be my heir.’

4 Well, the Lord immediately replied, saying: ‘He won’t be your heir… another who comes from you will be your heir.’

5 Then He took him outside and said: ‘Look up into the sky and count all the stars… that is, if you can come up with an accurate count.’ And He said: ‘This is how your seed will be.’

6 So Abram believed The God (gr. To Theo), and this [faith] was counted to him as righteousness.

7 Then [God] said to him: ‘I’m the God who brought you out of the land of the Chaldeans to give you this land as an inheritance.’

8 And [Abram] said: ‘My Lord and Master; How can I know [for sure] that I will inherit it?’

9 And He replied: ‘Collect for Me a three-year-old heifer, a three-year-old nanny goat, a three-year-old billy goat, a dove, and a pigeon.’ 10 So he brought all three of [the animals] to Him, cut them each into halves, and set [the halves] opposite each other… but he didn’t cut the winged creatures into halves.

11 Well, birds started landing on the bodies (the cut-up parts), as Abram sat there next to them.

12 Then about sunset, Abram fell into a trance and {Look!} he had an ominous premonition. 13 For Abram was told: ‘You must know this for a fact; Your seed will have to live as aliens in a foreign land where they’ll be slaves who are treated badly and humbled for four hundred years. 14 Then I will judge the nation that they are to serve; and following that, [your seed] will return here with many possessions. 15 However, you will go to your fathers well fed and in peace at a ripe old age. 16 Then the fourth generation will return here; because even to this point, the sins of the Amorites haven’t yet reached their climax.’

17 Well, as the sun was setting, {look!} there was a flame that looked like a smoking furnace and like lamp fires that moved between the divided pieces [of the animals]. 18 This was the day that Jehovah made a Sacred Agreement with Abram. He said: ‘I will give this land – from the [Nile] River of Egypt to the great EuPhrates River – to your seed, 19 along with the Kainites, the Kenezites, the KedMoneans, the Hittites, the Pherezites, the Raphaim, 20 the Amorites, the CanaAnites, the Hevites, the Gergesites, and the Jebusites.’

Chapter 16

1 Well, Sara, Abram’s woman, hadn’t given him any children. However, she had an Egyptian handmaid whose name was Hagar. 2 And Sara said to Abram: ‘Look; Jehovah has kept me from getting pregnant, so [sleep with] my maid that I might have my children through her.’

Abram accepted this offer from Sara, 3 so Sara (Abram’s woman) took Hagar her Egyptian handmaid (this was after Abram had lived in the land of CanaAn for ten years) and gave her to her man Abram as his woman. 4 Then [Abram] went in to [bed with] Hagar, and she became pregnant. But after she realized that she was going to have a child, she started being disrespectful to her mistress.

5 So Sara said to Abram: ‘I’ve really been hurt by you, for I gave you my handmaid [to sleep with], and when I saw that she was pregnant, she treated me disrespectfully. May Jehovah judge between you and me!’

6 Then Abram told Sara: ‘Look, your handmaid is yours! Treat her any way that seems right to you!’ So Sara started treating [Hagar] badly, and she ran away.

7 Then a messenger from Jehovah found [Hagar] by a spring of water in the desert (the spring on the way to Sur). 8 And Jehovah’s messenger said to her: ‘Hagar, Sara’s maid; Where are you coming from and where are you going?’

And she replied: ‘I’m running away from my mistress, Sara.’

9 Then Jehovah’s messenger said: ‘Return to your mistress and obey her.’ 10 And the messenger of Jehovah told her: ‘I will make your seed grow, and there will be so many that they can’t be counted.’

11 The messenger of Jehovah then went on to say: ‘Look; You are pregnant with a child. You will give birth to a son, and you should name him IshMaEl (‘God has Noticed’), because Jehovah has noticed how you’ve been humiliated. 12 He will be a wild man, for his fists [will be lifted] against everyone, and everyone [will lift] their fists against him. However, he will live in the midst of all his brothers.

13 Then she called upon the Name of the Lord God who was speaking to her, saying, ‘You are the God who watches over me,’ and she added, ‘because I openly saw the One who appeared to me.’ 14 [So from that point on] she called that well, ‘The Well of The One Whom I Openly Saw.’ Look; it [still can be found] between Cades and Barad!

15 So, Hagar bore a son to Abram; and Abram named the son that Hagar bore to him, IshMaEl. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore IshMaEl to [him].

Chapter 17

1 Then, when Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him [again] and said: ‘I am your God; so be pleasing before Me and don’t do anything for which you can be blamed, 2 and I will establish a Sacred Agreement between you and Me, and I will prosper you greatly!’

3 Well at that, Abram fell with his face [to the ground]. Then God spoke to him [again], saying: 4 ‘Look; I am making My Sacred Agreement with you… since you will become the father of many nations, your name will no longer be called Abram, but AbraHam; 5 for I’ve made you the father of many nations. 6 I will make you grow tremendously, I will make nations come from you, and kings will descend from you.

7 ‘I will also extend my Sacred Agreement between you and Me to the seed that comes from you through its generations. It is a Sacred Agreement through the ages that [I] will be your God and the God of the seed that comes from you. 8 Also, I will give the land where you are [now] living as an alien to you and to your seed. This includes the entire land of CanaAn… it will become yours through the ages, and I will be their God.’

9 Then God told AbraHam: ‘You must fully keep my Sacred Agreement… both you and your seed that descends from you through all their generations.

10 ‘This is the Sacred Agreement between you and your seed and Me through all its generations: All of your males must be circumcised11 the foreskin of their flesh must be circumcised, for this will be the sign of the Sacred Agreement between you and Me. 12 All of your male children must be circumcised by you when they are eight-days old, throughout all your generations. [This includes all your] home-born servants and those who are bought with money (the sons of aliens who are not your seed).

13 ‘Those who are born in your house and those who are bought with money must surely be circumcised. So My Sacred Agreement will be in their flesh as [a sign of the] Sacred Agreement through the ages. 14 As for the uncircumcised males who aren’t circumcised in the flesh of their foreskin on the eighth day; such individuals must be totally destroyed from among their families for breaking My Sacred Agreement!’

15 Then God told AbraHam: ‘Your woman Sara will no longer be called Sara… SarAh will be her name. 16 For I will bless her and give you a son from her, whom I will also bless… nations and kings of nations will come from him!’

17 Well with that, AbraHam fell to his face and laughed, asking in his heart, ‘Will a hundred-year-old [man] father a child? And will SarAh (who is ninety years old) give birth to it?’

18 Then AbraHam said to God: ‘Please accept IshMaEl to [stand] before You.’

19 But God told AbraHam: ‘Look; Your woman SarAh will give birth to your son, and you should name him IsaAc (Laughter). I will make my Sacred Agreement [with you] firm through him… it will be an age-long Sacred Agreement that I will be his God and [the God] of his seed that descends from him.

20 ‘As for IshMaEl; {Look!} I have heard you and I have blest him. I will make him grow and multiply tremendously, so he will become the father of twelve nations, of whom I will make a great people. 21 However, My Sacred Agreement will be established with IsaAc, whom SarAh will bear to you at this time next year.’

22 Then God stopped talking to him, and He left AbraHam.

23 Well thereafter, AbraHam took his son IshMaEl, all of his home-born servants, all of those whom he had bought with money… all the males in AbraHam’s house, and circumcised their foreskins on that very day, just as God had told him. 24 AbraHam was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, 25 and his son IshMaEl was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.

26 Both AbraHam and his son IshMaEl were circumcised that very day, 27 along with all the men of his house… those who were born there and the foreigners who were bought with money.

Chapter 18

1 God [next] appeared to [AbraHam] around noon, as he was sitting at the entrance to his tent by the big tree at MamRe. 2 For when he looked up, he saw three men standing in front of him. And when he noticed them, he ran from the entrance of his tent to meet them, bowing all the way to the ground. 3 Then he said: ‘Lords; If I have indeed found favor in your sight, don’t pass your servant by. 4 [I’ll have] water brought and [my servants] will wash your feet. You just rest here under this tree. 5 I will also bring some bread for you to eat, and then you can continue your journey… allow your servant to offer you some refreshment.’

And they replied, ‘You may do as you have said.’

6 So AbraHam ran back to SarAh (who was in the tent) and said to her, ‘Hurry… knead three scoops of fine flour and make [some bread].’

7 Then AbraHam ran to the pens, where he took a young calf (a nice, tender one) and gave it to his servant, who quickly prepared it. 8 Next, he got some butter, some milk, and the calf that he had prepared, and set it all out before them… and they ate as he stood near them under the tree.

9 Then the Lord asked: ‘Where is your woman, SarAh?’

And [AbraHam] replied: ‘Look, she’s there in the tent!’

10 So the Lord said: ‘I will return this way and come to see you during this season [next year], and your woman SarAh will have a son.’

Well, SarAh overheard this as she stood behind him at the entrance of the tent. 11 And because AbraHam and SarAh were old, and SarAh was [well beyond the age of child bearing], she laughed inside herself, saying, 12 ‘This hasn’t happened to me [in the past]… and now my lord is [too] old!’

13 And at that, the Lord asked AbraHam: ‘Why is SarAh laughing inside herself and asking, Will I give birth? I’m already old. 14 Is there anything that is impossible for Jehovah? I will return to you [next year] in this season, and SarAh will have a son!’

15 However, SarAh denied it, saying, ‘I didn’t laugh’ (she said this because she was afraid).

And the Lord replied, ‘Oh, but you did laugh.’

16 Then the men got up and headed toward Sodom and GomorRah; and AbraHam traveled along with them to assist in their journey.

17 So the Lord then asked: ‘Shall I hide the things that I’m about to do from my servant AbraHam? 18 For AbraHam will become a great and highly populated nation through whom all the nations of the earth will be blest, 19 because I know that he will order his sons and the house that is to come from him to keep the ways of Jehovah… to be righteous and just, so that Jehovah can bring all the things to AbraHam that He has promised.’

20 Then the Lord told him: ‘The cries that I’m hearing about Sodom and GomorRah keep growing, and their sins are very bad. 21 So I’m going down to see if they are as bad as the cries that I’m hearing have said. And if not, at least I will know [for sure].’ 22 So at that, the men headed toward Sodom.

Meanwhile, AbraHam was still there in the Lord’s presence. 23 So AbraHam went up to him and asked: ‘Are you going to destroy the righteous along with the wicked, treating the righteous as though they were wicked? 24 If there are fifty righteous [people] in the city, will you destroy them? Wouldn’t you spare the whole place if there were fifty righteous [people] there? 25 You would never do such a thing as to destroy the righteous along with the wicked and treat the righteous as though they were wicked… no way! Won’t you, the judge of the whole earth, do what is right?’

26 And the Lord said: ‘If there are fifty righteous [people] in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole city and the whole place for their sakes.’

27 Then AbraHam continued: ‘My Lord; Here I am speaking to you, and all I am is dirt and ashes. 28 However, what if there weren’t fifty righteous [people] and there were only forty-five. Would you destroy the whole city because of the lack of five?’

And the Lord said: ‘I won’t destroy it if I can find forty-five there.’

29 However, [AbraHam] just kept talking to him and said: ‘What if there are only forty? 30 Would you not destroy it for the sake of the forty?’ And he went on, ‘Lord, please don’t hold it against me if I continue to speak; but, what if there are thirty?’

And the Lord replied: ‘I won’t destroy it for the sake of thirty.’

31 So he said: ‘Since I am allowed to speak to [my] Lord; What if you can only find twenty?’

And he said: ‘I won’t destroy it if I can only find twenty.’

32 Finally, he said: ‘Lord; Would you hold it against me if I were to say just one more thing? What if you were to find just ten [righteous people]?’

And he replied: ‘I won’t destroy it for the sake of the ten.’

33 Then the Lord stopped speaking to AbraHam and left, and AbraHam returned to his [tent].

Chapter 19

1 That evening, the two messengers [of God] arrived at Sodom, where they found Lot sitting by the [city] gate. And when Lot saw them, he got up [and went] to meet them, bowing low with his face to the ground. He said: 2 ‘Look here, my lords; come to the house of your servant and rest from your journey. [Then you can] wash your feet and get up early in the morning to continue on your way.’

However, they said: ‘No, we’ll just sleep here in the street.’

3 But [Lot] kept insisting, so they went with him to his house. Then he baked fermentation-free bread and made a feast for them, which they ate.

4 [Well that evening], before they went to bed, the men of the city of Sodom gathered around the house… all of them, from the young to the old, 5 and they shouted for Lot, saying, ‘Where are the men that came to your home this evening? Send them out to us, so we can [have sex] with them!’

6 Well, Lot went out on his porch, shut the door behind him, 7 and said: ‘Absolutely not, my brothers! Don’t do this wicked thing! 8 I have two daughters who have never [had sex] with a man. I will bring them out to you and you can do whatever you want with them. However, don’t harm these men! It was to avoid such a thing that [I brought them] under the shelter of my roof!’

9 But they replied: ‘Get out of the way! You came here to live among us, and have you now become our judge? We’re going to do more harm to you than we’ll do to them!’ 10 So they started pushing Lot and were ready to break down his door. But the [messengers] reached out and grabbed Lot, dragged him back inside the house, and shut the door. 11 Then they struck the men who were at the door of the house with blindness, both the great and the small… until they finally got tired of trying to find the door.

12 And the [messengers] said to Lot: ‘If you have any sons, daughters, sons in law, or any friends in the city, you must take them away from this place, 13 because we’re going to destroy it! A great cry has been raised against [this city] to Jehovah, and [He] has sent us to destroy it.’

14 So Lot went and spoke to his [future] sons-in-law who [were engaged to] his daughters, and said: ‘Get up and leave this place, because Jehovah is going to destroy the city!’

However, to his [future] sons-in-law, it seemed as though he was joking.

15 Then the next morning, the messengers started to hurry Lot along, saying, ‘Get up! Take your woman and your two daughters and go, so you won’t be destroyed with the sins of this city!’ 16 However, they were unsure. So the messengers grabbed the hands of Lot, his woman, and his two daughters… and that’s how Jehovah saved them.

17 Then, once they were outside [of the city], the [messengers] told them: ‘Now, do whatever you must to save your own lives. You must not turn around and look back at the things that are behind you… and don’t stay anywhere in the countryside around here. Run to the mountains, so you won’t be [destroyed along] with the rest!’

18 But Lot said: ‘I beg you, Lord; Your servant has been shown such mercy and you have shown such righteousness in the things that you’ve done for me to save my life. 19 However, I won’t be able to make it to the mountains, because the [destruction] will likely catch up with me and kill me. 20 Look, there’s a town nearby… a small one that I can escape to and be spared. Isn’t this just a small thing? If you [allow] this, you will save my life!’

21 And [the messenger] told him: ‘Look; I will respect your wishes in this matter and I won’t destroy the town that you’re talking about. 22 But hurry and get out of here, because I won’t be able to do anything until you get there.’

And from that point on, [Lot] referred to that town as Segor (small).

23 Well, the sun was already up by the time that Lot arrived in Segor, and that’s when 24 Jehovah poured fire and sulfur from the sky upon Sodom and GomorRah. 25 destroying those cities, all the countryside around them, and everyone who lived in the cities… including even the plants that grew on the ground. 26 However, [Lot’s] woman tuned and looked back, and she became an upright block of salt.

27 Well that morning, as AbraHam arose early to go to the place where he had stood before the Lord; 28 when he looked toward Sodom, GomorRah, and the surrounding countryside, he saw what looked like the flames and smoke of a furnace arising from that land! 29 And this is how it all happened. However, when God destroyed all the cities around there, He remembered AbraHam and He brought Lot out of the midst of that destruction, when the Lord overthrew those cities where Lot had been living.

30 Well after that, Lot and his daughters left Segor and they went to live in the mountains, because he was afraid to live in Segor. So he and his daughters went and lived in a cave. 31 [It was there that] the eldest [daughter] said to the younger: ‘Our father is old, and no one on earth will come to us here where we’re living. 32 So, let’s get our father drunk with wine and then we will sleep with him, so we can have the seed of our father.’

33 Well that night, they brought their father some wine to drink, and the eldest went in and laid down with him. However, he wasn’t aware of when he went to sleep or when he got up.

34 Then the next day, the eldest said to the younger: ‘Look; I slept with our father last night. So let’s get him some wine to drink again tonight, and then you go in and sleep with him, so we can raise a seed from our father.’ 35 So [once again], they got their father to drink wine, and the younger went in and slept with her father that night… and he didn’t know when he went to sleep or when he got up. 36 As the result, the two daughters of Lot became pregnant by their father. 37 Then the eldest bore a son whom she called Moab, saying: ‘He’s of my father.’ ([Moab] is the father of the Moabites to this day). 38 And the younger also bore a son whom she named AmMon, saying: ‘He’s the son of my family.’ ([AmMon] is the father of the AmMonites to this day).

Chapter 20

1 Well, sometime after that, AbraHam moved to the southern part of the country and took up living between Cades and Sur, staying for a while in GeraRa. 2 And [there] AbraHam [told the people] that his woman SarAh was his sister. He didn’t want to say, ‘She’s my woman,’ for fear that the men of that city would kill him because of her.

So, AbiMelech (the king of GeraRa) sent for SarAh and took her [to be his woman]. 3 But God came to AbiMelech at night in a dream and told him: ‘Look; You’re all going to die because of this woman you’ve taken, since she [already has] a man!’

4 Well, AbiMelech hadn’t touched her [yet], so he replied: ‘Lord, would you destroy a righteous nation that has sinned in ignorance? 5 Didn’t he tell me, She’s my sister? And didn’t she tell me, He’s my brother? I’ve done this with righteous hands and with a pure heart.’

6 Then God replied to him in his [dream]: ‘Yes, I know that you did this with a pure heart. That’s why I’ve spared you and [kept you from] sinning against Me, and that’s why I also kept you from touching her. 7 So return this man’s woman now, because he’s a Prophet. Then he will pray for you and you will continue to live. However, if you don’t return her, you and all that are yours will die.’

8 So early the next morning, AbiMelech got up and called all his servants in; then he told them everything that was said, which frightened them. 9 And thereafter, AbiMelech called AbraHam in and asked, ‘What have you done to us? [What type of bad] have you seen in me that you should do such a thing? Have we sinned against you in some way so that you would draw my whole kingdom and me into such a great sin? Why, you’ve done something to me that no one should ever do!’ 10 And AbiMelech continued: ‘What [bad] have you seen in me that you would do such a thing?’

11 Then AbraHam replied: ‘[I thought] that this surely couldn’t be a place of godly people, so they will kill me for my woman. 12 [And in fact], she really is my sister by my father (but not by my mother), whom I took as my woman. 13 So when God took me from my father’s house, I told her, I have a righteous thing that I want you to do for me: Wherever we go, tell [people] that I’m your brother.

14 Then AbiMelech returned his woman SarAh, along with a thousand silver coins, as well as sheep, cattle, and male and female servants. 15 And AbiMelech said to AbraHam: ‘Look, my whole land lies before you. So now, go wherever you wish.’

16 Then he told SarAh: ‘Look, I’ve given your brother a thousand silver coins. These are yours as the price of your face and for all the women who are with you… but [in the future, you must] always tell the whole truth!’

17 So AbraHam prayed to God, and God healed AbiMelech. [He also healed AbiMelech’s] woman and his concubines, and they thereafter gave birth to children 18 (since Jehovah had closed all the wombs in AbiMelech’s house due to AbraHam’s woman, SarAh).

Chapter 21

1 Then the Lord visited SarAh and did as [He had promised] to her. 2 She became pregnant and bore a son to AbraHam in his old age, at the exact time that the Lord had specified. 3 And AbraHam named the son that was born to him through SarAh, IsaAc (Laughter). 4 Then on the eighth day, AbraHam circumcised IsaAc, just as God had instructed him.

5 AbraHam was a hundred years old when his son IsaAc was born. 6 And SarAh said: ‘Jehovah has created laughter for me, because everyone who hears [about this] will rejoice with me.’ 7 Then she added: ‘Who could tell AbraHam that I’m nursing a child, because I’ve given birth in my old age?’

8 Thereafter, the child grew; and on the day that he was weaned, AbraHam prepared a great feast. 9 However, SarAh noticed Hagar’s son (the one who was born to AbraHam through the Egyptian [woman]) playfully making fun of their son IsaAc. 10 So she told AbraHam: ‘Throw this slave woman and her son out, because I won’t have the son of this slave receive an inheritance with my son IsaAc!’

11 Now, those words about his son were very difficult for AbraHam. 12 But God said to AbraHam: ‘Don’t allow this thing about your son and the slave woman to become too difficult for you. Listen to whatever SarAh tells you, because IsaAc will be the one who is called your seed. 13 However, I will make a great nation of this slave woman’s son, because he’s also your seed.’

14 So the next morning, AbraHam got up, gave Hagar some loaves [of bread] and a skin of water, put her son on her shoulders, and sent her away. Then she left there and wandered in the desert near the Well of the Promise. 15 However, [before long] the skin of water was empty. So she threw her child under a fir tree, 16 where she left him, and then she sat some distance across from him (a bow-shot away). And she said: ‘I can’t just watch my child die.’ So she sat there across from him as her child bawled and cried.

17 Well, God heard the voice of the child from the place where He was, and a messenger from God called to Hagar from the sky, and asked: ‘Why are you so concerned, Hagar? Don’t worry; for God has heard the child’s voice from where He is. 18 So now, get up and take the child by his hand, because I’m going to make a great nation of him.’ 19 Then God opened her eyes and she saw a life [sustaining] well of water; so she went and filled the skin with water and gave the child a drink.

20 God was with that child, so he grew up living in the desert and he became an archer. 21 And as he was living there in the desert, his mother found a woman for him in Pharan, Egypt.

22 Now, the time came when AbiMelech, OchoZath (his trusted friend), and Pichol (the head of his army) [came to] AbraHam and said, ‘God is with you [and has blest] everything you do. 23 So, swear to me by God that you won’t harm me, my seed, or my name; rather, you should deal with me in the same righteous way that I’ve dealt with you in this land in which you are living.’

24 And AbraHam said, ‘I swear.’

25 Then AbraHam complained to AbiMelech about some water wells that his servants had taken from him. 26 And AbiMelech replied: ‘I don’t know who did this thing to you, nor did you tell me about it. Today is the first time I’ve heard of this.’

27 And thereafter, AbraHam took some cattle and sheep and gave them to AbiMelech, and they made a treaty. 28 Then AbraHam set aside seven female lambs. 29 And AbiMelech asked him: ‘Why have you set those seven female lambs aside?’

30 And AbraHam replied: ‘I’m giving my seven female lambs to you as testimony to the fact that I dug this well.’ 31 And he named that place, ‘The Well of the Promise,’ because that’s where they swore their oath 32 and made their treaty. So AbiMelech, his trusted friend OchoZath, and Pichol (the head of his army) got up and returned [home] to the land of the Philistines.

33 Then AbraHam planted a field at The Well of the Promise and started calling on the Name of the God of the ages, Jehovah. 34 And he stayed there in the land of the Philistines for many days.

Chapter 22

1 After that, God put AbraHam to the test. He called to him, saying, ‘AbraHam… AbraHam!’

And [AbraHam] replied, ‘Look! It’s me!’

2 Then [God] said: ‘Take your beloved son (this one whom you so love, IsaAc) then go to the highlands and offer him there on one of the mountains that I’ll tell you about, as a burnt offering.’

3 So AbraHam got up in the morning, saddled his burro, and [prepared to] take two servants and his son IsaAc with him. Then, after splitting some wood for the offering, he got up and traveled toward the place about which God had spoken to him.

4 Well, it was on the third day that AbraHam looked up and saw the place in the distance. 5 Then AbraHam said to his servants: ‘Stay here with the burros; for my son and I will go over there… and after we bow low [before God], we will return to you.’

 6 So AbraHam took the wood for the offering and laid it on his son IsaAc’s [shoulders], and the two went off together, with him carrying both the fire and the knife in his own hands.

7Then IsaAc called out to his father (AbraHam) and said: ‘Father!’

And he replied: ‘What is it, son?’

And [IsaAc] continued: ‘Look! [We have the] the fire and the wood, but where is the sheep for the offering?’

8 Then AbraHam said: ‘God will provide His own sheep for the offering, son.’

So they both traveled on, and they 9 finally arrived at the place that God had spoken to him about. Then AbraHam built the altar there and laid the wood on it, tied his son IsaAc’s feet together, and laid him on the wood on top of the altar. 10 And as AbraHam was reaching for the knife to slaughter his son, 11 a messenger of Jehovah called to him from the sky, and said, ‘AbraHam… AbraHam!’

And he said, ‘Look, it’s me!’

12 Then [the messenger] said, ‘Don’t lay a hand on the child and don’t do anything to him, for now I know that you fear God, since you haven’t spared even your loved son for My sake!’

13 And when AbraHam looked up, he saw {Look!} a male goat that was caught by its horns on a bush in the thicket. So AbraHam went over and grabbed the male goat; [then he] offered it as a whole burnt offering instead of his son IsaAc.

14 Well, AbraHam thereafter named that place, ‘The Lord Was Seen.’ [He did that] so people today would say, ‘This is the mountain where the Lord was seen.’

15 Then a messenger of Jehovah called AbraHam a second time from the sky, saying, 16 ‘This is what Jehovah said: I have sworn [an oath] by Myself that, because you’ve done this thing (because you haven’t spared your loved son for Me); 17 when it comes to blessings, I will bless you, and when it comes to multiplying, I will multiply your seed as the stars in the skies and as the sands on the sea shore. Your seed will inherit the cities of their enemies, 18 and all the nations of the earth will be blest by your seed, because you’ve listened to My voice.

19 Well thereafter, AbraHam returned to his servants, and they all got up and traveled together to the Well of the Promise. Then AbraHam took up living there at the Well of the Promise.

20 Then later on, AbraHam received this report: ‘Look! Melcha has given birth to sons by your brother NaHor! 21 Uz is the first-born, [then there is] Baux his brother, CamuEl (the father of the Syrians), Chazad, 22 Azav, Phaldes, JelDaph, and BathuEl (BathuEl was RebecKa’s father). 23 Melcha bore these eight sons to AbraHam’s brother NaHor. 24 In addition, his concubine (named RheUma) also gave birth to TaBec, TaAm, Tochos, and Mocha.’

Chapter 23

1 Well, SarAh lived to be a hundred and twenty-seven years old, 2 and then [she] died in the city of ArBoc (Hebron in the land of CanaAn), which is located in a valley. So AbraHam went to SarAh to mourn for her. 3 And as AbraHam stood before his dead [woman], he spoke to the sons of Chet, saying: 4 ‘I’m just a visitor and a stranger among you; but [please] allow me to buy a burying-place among [your people], so I can bury my dead away from [my place].’

5 And the sons of Chet replied to AbraHam, saying: ‘No Sir! 6 Listen; You may live among us, but you’re [really] a king from God! So, bury your dead in our best tombs! None of us will ever withhold our tombs to keep you from burying your dead here!’

7 Then AbraHam arose and bowed low before the people of the land (the sons of Chet). 8 And AbraHam said to them: ‘If you approve of me burying my dead out of my sight, then listen to what I have to say and [please] speak on my behalf to EphRon, the son of SaAr. 9 [I want] him to give me the double cave that he owns, which is located in his field. I will [be happy to] pay whatever it’s worth for a burial-place among you.’

10 Now, EphRon happened to be sitting there in the midst of the children of Chet, and [he] answered AbraHam (speaking where he could be heard by all the sons of Chet and by all who were entering the city) saying, 11 ‘Pay attention to me, my lord; Here before all my countrymen [I say], Bury your dead!

12 And at that, AbraHam bowed low before the people of the land, 13 and he told EphRon (before the people of the land): ‘Since you’re on my side, listen to me; Accept the price of the field from me and I’ll bury my dead there.’

14 However, EphRon answered AbraHam, saying, 15 ‘No, my lord! I’ve heard that the land [is worth] four hundred silver coins, but what value is that between you and me? No, just bury your dead.’

16 And though AbraHam heard what EphRon had said, he still paid [him] the money, just as he had vowed before the sons of Chet – four hundred silver coins that had been approved by the merchants.

17 So at that, the double cave that was in the field of EphRon opposite MamRe (the field, the cave that was in it, every tree in the field, and everything that was within its borders) was sold 18 to AbraHam as his possession, there in front of the sons of Chet and all those [who were] entering the city.

19 There, AbraHam buried his woman SarAh inside the field’s double cave, which is opposite Mamre (Hebron in the land of CanaAn). 20 For the field and its cave were sold to AbraHam as his burying place by the sons of Chet.

Chapter 24

1 By then, AbraHam was very old, and Jehovah had blest AbraHam in everything. 2 So AbraHam said to his servant (the elder of his house who was in charge of all his possessions): ‘Put your hand under my thigh, 3 because I want you to swear by Jehovah the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you won’t take a woman for my son IsaAc from the daughters of the CanaAnites… these [people] among whom I am living. 4 Rather, I want you to go to my country – to the place where I was born and to my people – to find a woman for my son IsaAc.’

5 And his servant replied: ‘But if the woman isn’t happy and willing to return with me to this land, should I carry your son back to that land from which you came?’

6 And AbraHam said to him: ‘Make sure that you don’t carry my son back there. 7 For Jehovah (the God of heaven and the God of earth) who took me out of my father’s house and out of the land where I was born… who spoke to me, and who swore to me, saying, I will give this land to you and to your seed, will send His messenger ahead of you… and you must take a woman for my son from there. 8 However, if the woman isn’t willing to come with you into this land, you will be free from this oath. Just don’t carry my son back there.’

9 So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master AbraHam, and swore to him. 10 Then the servant took ten camels from his master’s herd and [some of] his master’s valuables, and he traveled through MesoPotamia to the city of NaHor.

11 It was toward evening that he [stopped and] rested his camels outside of the city, by the well where the young women went to draw water. 12 And he [prayed]: ‘O Jehovah, the God of my master AbraHam; Bless what I’m doing today, and be merciful to my master AbraHam. 13 {Look!} Here I am standing by the well where the daughters of those who live in this city come to draw water. 14 And may it be that whichever virgin to whom I say, Bring down the water jar so that I may have a drink, and she replies, Take a drink, and I will also [pour water] for your camels to drink until they are satisfied; I’ll know that this is the one You’ve prepared for Your servant IsaAc, and that You’ve been merciful to my master, AbraHam.’

15 Well, before he was even done speaking in his mind, {Look!} RebecKa, the daughter of BathuEl (who was the son of Melcha, the woman of NaHor, AbraHam’s brother) came there carrying a water jug on her shoulders. 16 This virgin was very beautiful, and she was in fact a virgin… no man ever had sexual relations with her. She went down to the well, filled her water jug, and [walked back] up.

17 Then [AbraHam’s] servant ran to meet her, and said, ‘Give me a little water to drink from your pitcher.’

18 And she said, ‘Have a drink, sir.’ So she quickly removed the pitcher [from her head] and allowed him to drink until he was finished. 19 Then she said, ‘I’ll also draw water for your camels, until they’ve all have enough to drink.’ 20 And she quickly emptied the water jug into the trough, and then she kept running to the well to draw, until she had drawn enough water for all the camels.

21 Well, the man paid attention to this, but he didn’t say anything, because he wanted to know whether this was Jehovah blessing. 22 Then after all the camels were finished drinking, he gave her [two] gold earrings (each weighing about an eighth of an ounce), and he [put] two bracelets on her hands (they weighed about the same as ten gold coins), 23 and he asked her, ‘Whose daughter are you… tell me! And is there room for us to lodge with your father?’

24 Then she replied: ‘I’m the daughter of BathuEl, who is the son of Melcha and whose father was NaHor.’ 25 And she added: ‘We have straw, a lot of fodder, and a place for [you to] rest.’

26 Well at that, the man (who was very happy) bowed low to Jehovah 27 and said: ‘May Jehovah the God of my master AbraHam be praised, [because He] hasn’t allowed His righteousness or His truth to fail my master, since the Lord has led me right to the house of my lord’s brother!’

28 Then the young maiden ran and reported what he said to the household of her mother.

29 Now, RebecKa had a brother whose name was Laban; and Laban ran all the way to the well to meet the ma. 30 For when he saw the earrings and the bracelets on his sister’s hands; and when he heard what his sister RebecKa said about what the man had told her, he went to the man as he was standing by the well with his camels, 31 and said to him: ‘Come on in, you who are blest by Jehovah! Why are you standing outside? I’ve prepared the house and I’ve also made a place for your camels!’

32 So the man went into the house, and [Laban] unloaded the camels, gave them straw and fodder, and he drew water to wash the feet [of AbraHam’s servant] as well as the feet of the men who were with him; 33 then he set loaves of bread before them to eat. However, [AbraHam’s servant] said: ‘I’m not going to eat until I’ve told you the reason why I’ve come here.’

And [Laban] said, ‘Then go ahead and speak.’

34 So he said, ‘I’m a servant of AbraHam; 35 and Jehovah has greatly blest my master. He is highly respected and has been given sheep, cattle, silver, gold, male and female servants, camels, and burros. 36 And SarAh, my master’s woman, bore one son to my master after he had grown old, to whom he has given everything that he owns.

37 ‘Now, my master made me swear [an oath], saying, You must not take a woman for my son from among the daughters of the CanaAnites… these [people] among whom I am living. 38 But you should go to the house of my father and to my tribe, and take a woman for my son from there.

39 ‘Then I asked my master: What if the woman is unhappy about coming along?

40 ‘And he replied: Jehovah God, who has found me to be acceptable in His presence, will send His messenger along with you, and your journey will be blest. You should take a woman for my son from among my tribe and from the house of my father. 41 Then you will be free from the curse [of your oath]. And if they won’t give her to you when you get to my tribe, you will be freed from your oath.

42 ‘So today I came to this well, and I [prayed]: Jehovah, the God of my master AbraHam; If you will bless this journey that I’m now on, 43 {Look!} I will stand by this well where the daughters of the people of this city come to draw water. And whichever young woman to whom I will say, Give me a little water to drink out of your pitcher, 44 and she replies, Take a drink, and I will also [pour water] for your camels to drink until they are satisfied; this is the woman that Jehovah has prepared for His servant IsaAc, and that’s how I’ll know that You’ve been merciful to my master, AbraHam.

45 ‘Well, before I had even finished speaking in my mind, RebecKa arrived with her pitcher on her shoulders. And [after] she went down to the well and drew water, I said to her, Give me a drink. 46 Then she quickly took the pitcher from her head, and said, Take a drink, and I will also give your camels [something to] drink. So I drank, and then she watered the camels.

47 ‘So I asked her: Whose daughter are you… tell me! And she replied: I’m the daughter of BathuEl, who is the son of Melcha and whose father was NaHor. And that’s when I gave her the earrings and put the bracelets on her hands.

48 ‘Well, all of this made me so happy that I bowed low and praised Jehovah, the God of my master AbraHam, who has truly blest me in such a way that I might take the daughter of my master’s own brother for his son. 49 Now, tell me whether you will be merciful and just with my lord, so I can know which way to turn.’

50 And at this, Laban and BathuEl answered, saying: ‘Since this thing has come from Jehovah, we can’t answer you in either a bad way or a good way. 51 Look! There is RebecKa standing before you… take her and go! Let her be the woman of your master’s son, just as Jehovah has said.’

 52 And when AbraHam’s servant heard these words, he bowed to the ground to Jehovah. 53 Then he brought out silver and gold jewelry, as well as clothing, and gave it to RebecKa. He also gave gifts to her brother and to her mother. 54 And afterward, both he and the men who were with him ate and drank; then they went to sleep.

Well, when he got up in the morning, he said to them: ‘Now allow me to leave, so I can return to my master.’

55 And her brothers and mother said: ‘Let the virgin stay here with us for ten more days, and then she can go.’

56 But he replied to them: ‘Don’t hold me back, because Jehovah has blest my journey. Send me away now, so I can return to my master!’

57 And they said: ‘Let’s call the girl and ask [what she wants to do].

58 So they called RebecKa and asked, ‘Will you go with this man?’

And she replied, ‘I’ll go.’

59 So they [agreed to] send their sister RebecKa and all her possessions along with AbraHam’s servant and his attendants. 60 Then they [gave] RebecKa a blessing, saying to her, ‘You are our sister; now become ten thousands of thousands, and may your seed own the cities of their enemies.’

61 Thereafter, RebecKa and her female attendants mounted the camels and went along with the man. And the servant, on having received RebecKa, departed.

62 Meanwhile, IsaAc had traveled through the desert toward the Well of the Vision, and he took up living in the southern portion of that land. 63 It was toward evening that IsaAc had gone out into the plains to think (because he was discouraged). And when he looked up, he saw camels coming. 64 It was then that RebecKa looked up and saw IsaAc. So she quickly dismounted the camel 65 and asked the servant: ‘Who is the man that is walking across the plains to meet us?’

And the servant said: ‘This is my master.’ So she took her veil and covered herself.

66 Thereafter, the servant told IsaAc everything that he had done. 67 And IsaAc went to the house of his mother and took RebecKa, so she became his woman… and he loved her… and IsaAc was given comfort for [the death of] his mother, SarAh.

Chapter 25

1 Well after that, AbraHam married again, and his woman’s name was ChetTura. 2 She bore to him ZomBran, JeZan, Madal, Midian, JesBoc, and SoYe.

3 JeZan fathered Saba and Dedan. The sons of Dedan were the AsShurites, the Latusians, and the Laomim. 4 The sons of Midian were Gephar, Aphir, Enoch, Abida, and ElDaAh. These were all the sons of ChetTura. 5 However, AbraHam had given all of his possessions to his son IsaAc. 6 He just gave gifts to the sons of his concubines, then he sent them away from his son IsaAc, to a country in the east.

7 AbraHam lived to be a hundred and seventy-five years old. 8 But AbraHam [eventually found himself in] failing health and he died at a ripe old age… an old man who had lived a full life; and he was [buried] with his family.

9 His sons, IsaAc and IshMaEl buried him in the double cave that was in the field of EphRon (the son of SaAr the Chettite), which is across from Mamre. 10 So AbraHam and his woman SarAh [were both buried] in that field, inside the cave that AbraHam bought from the sons of Chet.

11 Well, after AbraHam died, God blest his son IsaAc. And IsaAc went to live by the Well of the Vision.

12 These are the generations of IshMaEl, the son of AbraHam, whom Hagar (SarAh’s Egyptian handmaid) had born to AbraHam, 13 and these are the names of IshMaEl’s sons by each of their generations: The firstborn of IshMaEl was NabaiOth, then Kedar, NabDeEl, MasSam, 14 MasMa, Duma, MasSe, 15 ChodDan, ThaEman, Jetur, Naphes, and Kedma. 16 Those are all IshMaEl’s sons, whose names are on their tents and dwellings… twelve princes of their nations.

17 And this is how long IshMaEl lived: a hundred and thirty-seven years. Thereafter, [his health started to] fail and he died and was [buried with] his family.

18 [IshMaEl] and all his descendants lived [in the area] from Evilat [in the northeast] to Sur [in the southwest], and from Assyria to just across from Egypt.

19 And these are the generations of IsaAc, the son of AbraHam: 20 AbraHam fathered IsaAc. And when IsaAc was forty years old, he took RebecKa (the daughter of BathuEl, the Syrian of Syrian MesoPotamia, the sister of Laban the Syrian) as his woman.

21 Then IsaAc prayed to Jehovah about his woman RebecKa, because she was sterile, and Jehovah heard him; so his woman (RebecKa) got pregnant. 22 And [one day], the babies that were inside her jumped. And she asked, ‘Why did this happen to me?’ So she went to ask Jehovah, 23 and He told her: ‘There are two nations in your womb, and two races will be separated from your belly. One race will become greater than the other, and the older one will serve the younger.’

24 Well, when it came time for her to deliver, she [found that] she indeed had twins in her womb. 25 The first came out red and covered with hair all over his skin; and she named him Esau. 26 Then his brother was born while holding onto the heel of Esau with his hand, so she named him Jacob (Snatcher of the Heel). IsaAc was sixty years old when RebecKa bore them.

27 After the boys grew up, Esau became a skilled hunter who lived in the country, while Jacob was a simple man who lived in a house. 28 And though IsaAc loved Esau (because he enjoyed venison), RebecKa loved Jacob.

29 Then [one day], as Jacob was cooking up some stew, Esau came in from the plains tired and weak, 30 he said to Jacob: ‘Let me have a taste of that red stew, because I’m weak.’ (That’s when he started to be called Edom [or Red]).

31 And Jacob replied to Esau: ‘Then sell me your right [as firstborn]… right now!’

32 So Esau said: ‘Look, I’m about to die! What good does this right [of the firstborn] mean to me?’

33 And Jacob said to him: ‘Swear to me right now!’ So then he swore to him, and that’s when Esau sold his birthright to Jacob. 34 Thereafter, Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew, which he ate and drank, then he got up and left. This is how Esau [showed little regard for] his birthright.

Chapter 26

1 Thereafter, a famine came upon the land that was greater than past famines that had happened in the time of AbraHam. So IsaAc went to GeraRa to [see] AbiMelech, the king of the Philistines. 2 And there the Lord appeared to him and said: ‘Do not go to Egypt! Rather, live in the land that I’m going to tell you about. 3 Stay in this land and I will be with you and bless you. I’m going to give all of this land to you and to your seed, for now I will fulfill the oath that I swore to your father AbraHam. 4 I will increase your seed as the stars in the skies, I will give all of this land to your seed, and all the nations of the earth will be blest by your seed, 5 because AbraHam (your father) listened to My voice and did as I said… He obeyed My commandments, rules, and laws.’ 6 So, IsaAc started living there in GeraRa.

7 Well, when the men in GeraRa asked him about RebecKa (his woman), he told them, ‘She’s my sister;’ because he was afraid to say, ‘She’s my woman.’ For she was very pretty and [he feared that] the men there would kill him for RebecKa.

8 Then, after he had lived there a long time, AbiMelech (the king of GeraRa) happened to lean over to look out his window, and he saw IsaAc playing with RebecKa, his woman. 9 So AbiMelech called IsaAc and asked him, ‘Is she your woman? [And if so, then] why did you say she’s your sister?’

And IsaAc replied: ‘Well, I said this so that I wouldn’t be killed for her.’

10 And AbiMelech said: ‘Why would you do such a thing to us? Before long, one of my relatives would have had [sex] with your woman, and you would have brought a sin upon us in our ignorance!’

11 So AbiMelech gave a command to all his people, saying: ‘Any man who touches this man or his woman will die!’

12 Then IsaAc planted grain in the land; and that year, the barley produced a hundred times [more than what he had planted], for Jehovah was blessing him. 13 So he became highly regarded and very wealthy, as he continued to prosper, 14 owning many sheep, cattle, and tillable lands. As the result, the Philistines [started to] envy him, 15 and [they] stopped up all the wells that his father’s servants had dug back in his time, filling them in with dirt.

16 Then AbiMelech told IsaAc: ‘[I want you to] leave us, because you’ve become much greater than us.’

17 So IsaAc left there, stopping to rest in the valley of GeraRa, where [he decided to] live.

18 And once more, IsaAc dug the [same type of] wells that his father’s servants had dug (which the Philistines had stopped up after AbraHam’s death). And he gave them each names, using the same names as his father had used. 19 Then when IsaAc’s servants dug in the valley of GeraRa, they found a live well of water. 20 However, the shepherds of GeraRa argued with IsaAc’s shepherds, claiming that the water was theirs. So they named the well Injury, because [they claimed] injury over this matter.

21 As the result, he left that place and dug another well. [But then the people] started claiming [that it was theirs also]. So he named it Hatred. 22 And he left that place and dug another well, which no one else claimed to be theirs; so he named it Space, saying: ‘Jehovah has made space for us and He has prospered us in the land.’

23 Then he traveled to the Well of the Promise, 24 where Jehovah appeared to him that night and said, ‘I am the God of your father AbraHam. Don’t be afraid, for I am with you! Because of your father AbraHam, I will bless you and your seed will increase.’

25 So he built an altar there, and he named it Jehovah. Then he pitched his tent, and IsaAc’s servants dug another well there in the valley of GeraRa.

26 Then later, AbiMelech came to him from [the City of] GeraRa, with his trusted friend OchoZath, and with Phichol, the commander of his army. 27 And IsaAc asked them: ‘Why have you come to me here, now that you’ve shown your hatred for me and driven me away?’

28 And they replied: ‘We have seen that the Lord is surely with you. So we said, Let us swear an oath between him and us. Yes, we want to make an agreement with you, 29 that you won’t do any wrong to us, and we won’t show any more hatred toward you. After all, isn’t it because we treated you well by sending you away peacefully that you are now blest by Jehovah?’

30 So [IsaAc] prepared a feast for them, and they all ate and drank. 31 And when they got up the next morning, they each swore [an oath] to their neighbors. Then IsaAc sent them away, and they left him in safety.

32 However, that very same day, IsaAc’s servants came and [gave him news about] the well that they were digging. They said, ‘We’ve found water!’ 33 So he named it and the city, ‘The Oath.’ This is why that city is called ‘The Well of the Promise‘ (BeerSheba) to this day.

34 Then when Esau was forty years old, he took Judith, the daughter of BeOch the Chettite, and BaseMath (the daughter of Helon the Chettite). 35 And [these women] made life very difficult for IsaAc and RebecKa.

Chapter 27

1 Well, after IsaAc grew old, his eyes became so dim that he couldn’t see. Then he called Esau, his eldest son, and said to him: ‘Son!’

And [Esau] replied: ‘Look, here I am!’

2 And [IsaAc] said: ‘{Look!} I’m old and I don’t know [how much longer I will live]. 3 So, go get your weapons, both your bow and your quiver, and go into the plains to get me some venison. 4 Then prepare the meat for me just the way I like it and bring it to me, so I can eat it. Thereafter, I will pass my blessing upon your life before I die.’

5 However, RebecKa overheard IsaAc speaking to his son Esau. And after Esau had gone out to the plains to get some venison for his father, 6 RebecKa said to her younger son Jacob: ‘{Look!} I overheard your father speaking to your brother Esau. And he told him 7 to bring him some venison and prepare the meat so he could eat it; then he would bless him in front of Jehovah, before he dies.

8 ‘Now, listen my son and do what I tell you! 9 Go out to the animals and bring two young goats to me ([make sure they’re] tender and good), and I’ll prepare the meat for your father just the way he likes it. 10 Then you must take it to your father, so he can eat it and bless you before he dies.’

11 But Jacob said to his mother RebecKa: ‘My brother Esau is covered with hair, while [my body] is smooth. 12 So if my father should [reach out] and feel me, it will look to him as though I’m doing a bad thing, and that would bring a curse on me, not a blessing!’

13 However, his mother said to him: ‘May I receive your curses, my son. Just listen to what I’ve told you to do and bring [the young goats] to me.’

14 So he went out and brought them to his mother, and his mother prepared the meat just the way his father liked it. 15 Then RebecKa took some of her eldest son Esau’s finest clothes that she had there in the house, and put them on her younger son Jacob, 16 and she also covered his arms and the bare parts of his neck with the skins of the young goats. 17 Thereafter, she put the meat and the bread that she had prepared into the hands of Jacob, 18 and he brought it in to his father.

He said, ‘Father.’

And [IsaAc] replied, ‘Look, it’s me! Who are you, son?’

19 And Jacob said to his father: ‘It’s me, Esau your first-born! I’ve done what you’ve told me to do; so sit up and eat my venison… then you can pass your blessings on my life.’

20 But IsaAc asked his son: ‘How did you find [the meat] so quickly?’

And he replied: ‘Jehovah your God set it before me.’

21 Then IsaAc told Jacob: ‘Come close to me so I can feel you, [to see] whether you are truly my son Esau!’

22 And Jacob drew close to his father, so IsaAc could feel him, and he said: ‘Your voice is that of Jacob, but your hands are the hands of Esau.’

23 Therefore he didn’t recognize him, because his hands were hairy like the hands of his brother Esau… and this is how [IsaAc] came to bless [Jacob].

24 Well after that, [IsaAc] again asked, ‘Are you my son Esau?’

And [Jacob] replied: ‘It’s me.’

25 So he said: ‘Then bring your venison over here and I’ll eat it son, and I will pass my blessings on your life.’

So he brought [the food] to him and he ate it, along with some wine, which he drank.

26 Thereafter, IsaAc (his father) said to him: ‘Come close and kiss me, son.’

27 So [Jacob] went over and kissed him; and [IsaAc] then sniffed the odor of his clothes and blest him, saying, ‘{Look!} This is the odor of my son. It has the smell of a wonderful field that has been blest by Jehovah. 28 So may God give you the dew of the skies, the fatness of the land, and plenty of grain and wine. 29 May the ethnics serve you, and may their princes bow low before you. May you be the lord of your brother, and may your father’s [other] sons show you respect. May anyone who curses you be cursed, and may all who praise you be blest.’

30 Well after IsaAc had blest his son Jacob (immediately after Jacob had left the presence of IsaAc his father), his brother Esau returned from his hunt. 31 He had also prepared some meat and brought it in to his father, and he said: ‘Get up father! Sit up and eat some of your son’s venison, so you can pass your blessings on my life.’

32 But his father IsaAc asked: ‘Who are you?’

And he said: ‘I’m your first-born son, Esau!’

33 Well, IsaAc was shocked, and asked: ‘Then, who was it that [just] got the venison and brought it to me? I ate it all before you got here, and I blest him… so he’s the one that will be blest!’

34 And when Esau heard what his father IsaAc said, he shouted loudly and bitterly: ‘I beg you, father; Bless me too!’

35 And [IsaAc] told him: ‘Your brother slyly took your blessing.’

36 Then [Esau] said: ‘He is well named Jacob, because {Look!} this is the second time that has he taken what was mine. First he took my right as the firstborn, and now he has taken my blessing!’

And again, Esau asked his father: ‘Don’t you have a blessing left for me, father?’

37 Then IsaAc said to Esau: ‘I’ve already made him your lord and all of your brothers his servants. I have also empowered him with the wine and grain… so what more can I give you, my son?’

38 But Esau asked his father: ‘Don’t you have just one blessing father? I beg you father, bless me too!’

Well, this really bothered IsaAc, because Esau was shouting and crying. 39 So (his father) IsaAc answered and said: ‘Look; Your home will be in the fatness of the ground and in the dew of the skies up above. 40 You will indeed live by your sword and you will serve your brother. However, the time will come when you will loosen and break his yoke from your neck.’

41 Well, Esau was very angry with Jacob over the blessing that his father had given to him. So Esau thought about it and then he said: ‘May the days of mourning my father come quickly, so I can kill my brother Jacob!’

42 Then when these words of Esau (her eldest son) were reported to RebecKa; she sent for her younger son Jacob, and said to him: ‘{Look!} Your brother Esau has threatened to kill you! 43 So now, listen to me, my son; Get up and quickly leave for MesoPotamia… go to my brother Laban in Haran 44 and live with him until all of your brother’s anger 45 and rage against you has passed and he forgets what you’ve done to him. Then I will send for you and bring you back. For I don’t want to be saddened over [the death] of both you [and your father] on the same day.’

46 Then [later], RebecKa said [to IsaAc]: ‘I’m so tired of my life because of the daughters of the sons of Chet. And if Jacob were [also] to take a woman from the daughters of this land, where would I live?’

Chapter 28

1 So IsaAc called for Jacob… he blest him and said to him: ‘You must not take a woman from among the daughters of the CanaAnites. 2 Rather, get up quickly and travel to MesoPotamia, to the house of my father-in-law BathuEl, and find yourself a woman among the daughters of your mother’s brother Laban. 3 May my God bless you, prosper you, and make you increase; for you will indeed become a gathering of nations. 4 May He give the blessings of my father AbraHam to you and to your seed that comes after you, so that you will inherit this land in which you are living and which God had given to AbraHam.’

5 So thereafter, IsaAc sent Jacob away, and he went to [stay with] Laban, the son of BathuEl the Syrian, who was the brother of RebecKa (the mother of Jacob and Esau) in MesoPotamia.

6 Now, Esau knew that IsaAc had blest Jacob and that after he blest him, he’d sent him away to find a woman in Syrian MesoPotamia. [And he also knew that he told Jacob] not to take a woman from the daughters of the CanaAnites… 7 and that Jacob had obeyed his father and mother by going off to Syrian MesoPotamia. 8 For Esau recognized that his father IsaAc viewed the daughters of the CanaAnites as evil. 9 As the result, he went to see IshMaEl (the son of AbraHam) and he took MaEleth (IshMaEl’s daughter and NabeOth’s sister) to be another one of his wives.

10 Meanwhile, Jacob had left the Well of the Promise and traveled to Haran. 11 And when he reached a certain place, he decided to sleep there, since the sun had gone down. So he chose a stone and placed it under his head, then he went to sleep in that place 12 and he started to dream.

Well, {Look!} [in the dream] there was a stairway fastened to the ground that reached all the way into the heavens… and the messengers of God were ascending and descending upon it. 13 Then [he saw] Jehovah standing at the top of it, who said this to him:
‘I am the God of your father AbraHam and the God of IsaAc. Don’t be afraid, for I will give the land where you’re now lying to you and to your seed. 14 For your seed will become as many as the sands of the earth… they will spread from the sea to the north, south, and the east. And through you and your seed all the tribes of the earth will be blest. 15 Look; I am with you! [I will] always keep you safe no matter where you may go… and then I will return you to this land. I will never leave you until I’ve done everything that I said I will do for you.’

16 And when Jacob awoke from his sleep, he said: ‘Jehovah is here and I didn’t realize it.’

17 Well, this frightened him, and he said: ‘What a fearful place! For this is nothing other than the House of God and the Gate to Heaven!’

18 So after Jacob got up in the morning, he took the stone on which he had laid his head and erected it as a pillar. Then he anointed it with oil, 19 and he named that place, The House of God (BethEl). (Before that, the city had been called UlamLuz.)

20 There Jacob made a vow to Jehovah, saying: ‘If You will be with me and guard me throughout this journey, giving enough me bread to eat and clothes to wear, 21 and then You bring me back safely to the house of my father; You will be my God. 22 Also, this stone that I have erected as a pillar will be a House of God to me, and I will return a tenth of everything that You give to me.’

Chapter 29

1 So thereafter, Jacob [resumed his journey] eastward toward the land of Laban… to the son of BathuEl the Syrian and the brother of RebecKa (the mother of Jacob and Esau).

2 {Look!} [Jacob] then spied a well in the plains where there were three flocks of sheep resting. It was a well that they used to water the flocks, and there was a large stone covering it. 3 For after all the flocks had gathered there, they used to roll the stone away from the mouth of the well to provide water for the [animals], then they’d push it back over the mouth of the well to cover it again.

4 So Jacob asked [those who were there]: ‘Brothers, where are you from?’

And they replied: ‘We’re from Haran.’

5 Then he asked: ‘Do you know Laban, the son of NaHor?’

And they answered: ‘We do!’

6 And he asked: ‘Is he doing well?’

Then they replied: ‘He is well. Look, here comes his daughter RachEl with his sheep!’

7 And Jacob said: ‘It’s still mid-day… it isn’t time for the flocks to be gathered yet. So, why don’t you just water the flocks, then take them back out to graze?’

8 But they said: ‘We can’t do that until all the shepherds arrive. They will roll away the stone from the mouth of the well and then we will all water our flocks.’

9 Well, while he was still speaking to them, {Look!} Laban’s daughter RachEl arrived with her father’s sheep, because she was in charge of grazing them. 10 And when Jacob saw RachEl (the daughter of Laban, his mother’s brother) and the sheep of his mother’s brother Laban; Jacob went over and rolled the stone away from the mouth of the well and watered Laban’s sheep.

11 Thereafter, Jacob kissed RachEl and shouted loudly, as he [started to] cry… 12 for he explained to RachEl that he was a close relative of her father, and that he was the son of RebecKa. So she ran and told her father what he said. 13 And when Laban heard the name of Jacob (his sister’s son), he ran to meet him… he hugged and kissed him, then he led him into his house.

Then after [Jacob] explained to Laban [all that had happened to him], 14 Laban said to him: ‘You are my own flesh and bones!’

Well, after [Jacob] stayed had with [Laban] for a full month, 15 Laban said to Jacob: ‘Surely you aren’t going to serve me for nothing, for you’re my brother! Tell me how I can reward you!’

16 It so happened that Laban had two daughters. The name of the eldest was called LeAh, and the younger was called RachEl. 17 Though LeAh had weak eyes, RachEl was beautiful and had a very pretty face. 18 And because Jacob loved RachEl, he replied: ‘I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter, RachEl.’

19 So Laban said to him: ‘It’s better for me to give her to you than to some other man. Come and live with me!’

20 Well, Jacob served [Laban] seven years for RachEl, but to him it seemed like just a few days, because he loved her so much. 21 Then Jacob told Laban: ‘Now, give me my woman, because I’ve served my time.’

22 So Laban assembled all the people and prepared a wedding banquet. 23 Then that evening, he took his daughter LeAh and brought her to Jacob, and Jacob [had sex] with her. 24 Laban also gave his servant ZelPha to his daughter LeAh, to be her handmaid.

25 Well, it was [the next] morning before [Jacob realized] that it was LeAh. So Jacob [went to] Laban and asked: ‘What have you done to me? Didn’t I serve you for RachEl? Why have you deceived me?’

26 And Laban answered: ‘In our country, it isn’t proper to give the younger before the eldest. 27 Serve me for seven [more years] and I’ll give her to you also, in return for your labor of seven more years.’

28 So, that’s what Jacob did… he served for seven [more years]. Then Laban also gave his daughter RachEl to be his woman. 29 And Laban gave his servant BalLa to be his daughter’s handmaid.

30 Thereafter, [Jacob had sex with] RachEl, and he loved RachEl more than LeAh… and this is why [he had been willing] to serve him for seven more years.

31 Well when Jehovah God saw that [Jacob] wasn’t attracted to LeAh, He opened her womb, while RachEl remained barren. 32 So LeAh got pregnant and bore a son to Jacob, whom she named ReuBen (See, a Son!). For she said, ‘Jehovah has seen my humiliation and given me a son, so that now my man will love me.’

33 Then she got pregnant again and bore a second son to Jacob. [This time] she said: ‘Because Jehovah has heard that I’m hated, He has also given me this one.’ So she named him SimeOn (He Has Heard).

34 Then she got pregnant a third time and bore a son, and said: ‘Now my man will stay with me, because I’ve born three sons to him.’ So she named him Levi (He Is Mine).

35 Thereafter she got pregnant again and bore a [fourth] son. And she said: ‘I give thanks to Jehovah once more.’ So, she named him Judah (Praised). And after that, she stopped having children.

Chapter 30

1 Well, when RachEl realized that she wasn’t bearing children for Jacob, she became jealous of her sister, and she said to Jacob: ‘Give me children… for if you don’t, I’ll die!’

2 This made Jacob very angry with RachEl, so he asked: ‘Am I in the position of God who has deprived you of the fruit of your womb?’

3 Then RachEl told Jacob: ‘Look; Here’s my handmaid BalLa. [Sleep] with her, and she will give birth [to children] on my knees… I will have children by her.’

4 So she gave him BalLa her handmaid to be his woman, and Jacob went in [and slept with] her. 5 As the result, BalLa (RachEl’s handmaid) got pregnant and bore a son to Jacob. 6 Then RachEl said: ‘God has given me justice and listened to my voice, for He has given me a son.’ So she named him Dan (Justice).

7 Thereafter, BalLa (RachEl’s handmaid) got pregnant again and bore a second son to Jacob. 8 And RachEl said: ‘God has helped me… I fought with my sister and won.’ So she named him NaphTali (Struggle).

9 Well when LeAh saw that she was no longer bearing children, she took ZelPha her handmaid and gave her to Jacob as his woman, and he went in to [sleep with] her. 10 So ZelPha, LeAh’s handmaid, got pregnant and bore Jacob a son. 11 And LeAh said, ‘[I’m] happy!’ So she named him Gad (Happiness).

12 Then ZelPha, LeAh’s handmaid, got pregnant again and bore Jacob a second son. 13 This time LeAh said: ‘I am blest, because the women will call me blest.’ So she named him Asher (Blessings).

14 Well, when it came time to harvest the barley, ReuBen went out to the field and found some mandrake apples [growing] there, and he brought them to his mother LeAh. Then RachEl said to her sister, ‘Give me some of your son’s mandrakes!’

15 And LeAh replied: ‘Isn’t it enough that you’ve taken my man… would you also take my son’s mandrakes?’

And RachEl said: ‘[I’ll] allow you to [sleep] with [Jacob] tonight for your son’s mandrakes.’

16 So that evening, when Jacob came in from the field, LeAh went out to meet him and said: ‘You will [sleep] with me tonight, because I’ve hired you for my son’s mandrakes.’ So he slept with her that night, 17 and God listened to LeAh, so she got pregnant and bore a fifth son to Jacob. 18 And LeAh said: ‘God has rewarded me for giving my handmaid to my man.’ So she named him IshSachar (Reward).

19 Then LeAh got pregnant again and bore a sixth son to Jacob. 20 And LeAh said: ‘God has given me a fine gift this time. For my man will choose me, since I’ve given him six sons.’ So she named him ZebuLon (Gift).

21 And after that, she gave birth to a daughter whom she named DinAh (Justified).

22 Then God remembered RachEl… He heard her and opened her womb, 23 so she got pregnant and bore Jacob a son. And RachEl said: ‘Jehovah has removed my disgrace.’ 24 So she named him JoSeph (Jehovah Will Increase), saying, ‘May God give me another son.’

25 Well, after RachEl had given birth to JoSeph, Jacob said to Laban: ‘[Allow] me to leave now, so I may return to my country and my home. 26 Free my women and children for whom I served you, so I can go… and don’t forget all the services that I’ve provided for you.’

27 Then Laban replied: ‘If I’ve found favor in your eyes, it’s a good sign for me, because Jehovah has blest me by sending you here. 28 Now, tell me how much I owe you and I’ll pay it.’

29 And Jacob said: ‘You know how many ways I’ve served you and how many of your cattle I’m [responsible for]… 30 you didn’t have many before I came here, and now there are many! So, Jehovah God has blest you since I arrived. Now, help me to establish my own house.’

31 Then Laban asked: ‘What should I give you?’

And Jacob replied, ‘Don’t give me anything… just do this one thing for me: I will continue to watch over your flocks and tend them, 32 and as your sheep pass by each day, let me set aside the dark sheep and the speckled and spotted goats as my reward. 33 So by tomorrow, my righteousness will answer for me, because this will be my reward from you. You can steal back any goats that aren’t spotted or speckled, or any sheep that aren’t dark.’

34 Well at that, Laban agreed, saying: ‘May it be as you’ve said.’

35 However, that same day, [Laban craftily] separated the spotted and speckled billy goats and nanny goats, and all the dark sheep from those that were white, and he gave them to his sons. 36 Then he sent [them away] on a three-day journey, while Jacob was tending the animals that were left behind.

37 However, Jacob gathered some green rods from storax, walnut, and sycamore trees, and peeled them alternately [to create the look of] white and green stripes, which gave a [spotted] appearance to the rods. 38 Then he laid the rods he had peeled at the bottom of the watering troughs, so that when the cattle came to drink, they would see the rods and mate there in front of the rods. 39 And [that’s what happened]… the cattle did get pregnant at the rods and gave birth to [young with] speckles, streaks, and ash-colored spots. 40 Then Jacob separated the lambs, setting aside the speckled goats and lambs for himself away from Laban’s sheep.

41 So thereafter, Jacob [continued] to put the rods in the troughs before the cattle, so they would mate in front of the rods. 42 And when the cattle gave birth, [he would give] the unmarked ones to Laban, but he set aside the marked ones as his. 43 And [before long], he became very rich with many cattle, oxen, male and female servants, camels, and burros.

Chapter 31

1 However, Jacob happened to overhear Laban’s sons saying, ‘Jacob has taken everything that belongs to our father and all our father’s property… all of his glory!’ 2 So Jacob realized that Laban [wasn’t happy to see him anymore].

3 Then the Lord said to Jacob: ‘Now, return to your family and to your father’s land, and I will be with you.’

4 So Jacob sent for LeAh and RachEl, [who were] out in the plains with the flocks, 5 and said to them: ‘I know that your father is no longer [happy to see me]. However, the God of my father is still with me. 6 For although I’ve served your father with all my might, 7 he deceived me by changing what he owed me to [just] ten lambs… yet, God hasn’t allowed him to [wrong me]. 8 For if he would have said, The speckled will be your reward; then all the cattle would give birth to the speckled. And if he would have said, The white ones will be your reward; all the cattle would have been born white. 9 So it was God who has taken all these cattle from your father and given them to me.

10 ‘[I knew this because], during the time that the cattle were pregnant with their young, I fell asleep and {Look!} dreamed that I saw billy goats and rams jumping on the nanny goats and sheep that were all speckled, striped, and spotted with ash-colored spots. 11 Then a messenger from God called to me in that dream, shouting, Jacob! And I said, What is it? 12 And he said, Look up and see the billy goats and rams jumping on the nanny goats and sheep… they are all speckled, striped, and spotted with ash-colored spots. I’ve seen all things that Laban did to you; 13 for I’m the God who appeared to you at BethEl where you poured oil on a pillar to Me and [where you] swore an oath to Me. So now, get up and leave this land. Return to the land of your birth, and I will be with you!

14 Then RachEl and LeAh asked, ‘So, what about our inheritance in the house of our father? 15 Does he now consider us strangers? He sold us and then he spent our money! 16 So all the wealth and glory that God has taken from our father belongs to us and to our children. Therefore, do whatever God has told you to do!’

17 Well at that, Jacob got up and mounted his women and children on their camels, 18 along with all the possessions and provisions he had obtained in MesoPotamia and all [the servants and animals] that belonged to him, so he could return to his father (IsaAc) in the land of CanaAn, 19 as Laban was off shearing his sheep. Meanwhile, RachEl also stole her father’s idols.

20 Jacob didn’t let Laban the Syrian know that he was running away… 21 he and all who were his just left, crossing the river and traveling on to Mount GileAd.

22 Well, it was three days later that Laban the Syrian was finally told that Jacob had gone. 23 So he gathered his brothers and chased after them, catching up with them after seven days at Mount GileAd. 24 However, God came to Laban the Syrian in his sleep that night and said to him: ‘Be very careful not to say anything bad about Jacob.’ 25 So when Laban caught up with Jacob (Jacob had pitched his tent on the mountain, and Laban had stationed his brothers all around the mountain), 26 he asked Jacob: ‘What have you done… why did you run away secretly, then steal from me and use swords to take my daughters as captives? 27 If you had just told me first, I would have happily sent you away with singing, tambourines, and harps! 28 Didn’t you consider me worthy to hug my children and my daughters before you did such a foolish thing?

29 ‘And now, although I have enough power in my hands to harm you; the God of your father spoke to me yesterday and said, Be very careful to never say anything bad about Jacob. 30 So go on, because you really wanted to return to the house of your father. However, why did you steal my gods?’

31 And Jacob replied to Laban: ‘[I left secretly] because I was afraid that you would take your daughters and all my possessions away from me!’ 32 And he added: ‘But whoever you find that has [stolen] your gods won’t [be allowed to] live in the presence of our family. Just look around for anything I might have that’s yours and take it!’

[Well, Laban searched], but he couldn’t find anything (Jacob didn’t realize that his woman RachEl had stolen [the idols]). 33 Laban went in and searched LeAh’s tent, then Jacob’s tent, and then the tent of the two female servants, and he found nothing. Lastly, he entered RachEl’s tent. 34 However, RachEl had hidden the idols among the camel’s packs and she was sitting on them. 35 [And when her father asked], she told him: ‘Don’t be impudent, sir! I can’t get up and stand before you, because it isn’t my way and it isn’t customary for women!’

Well, Laban searched throughout the [camp] and he couldn’t find the idols, 36 which made Jacob very angry; so he argued with Laban and asked him: ‘What wrong have I done to you and what is my sin that caused you to chase after me 37 and then search all the furnishings in my home? What have you found [that ] came from your home? Lay it out here between your relatives and mine, and let them decide!

38 ‘Why, I’ve been with you for twenty years, during which your sheep and nanny goats didn’t fail to give birth… and I didn’t eat any of the rams from your herds. 39 All that I ever took was the wild animals that I didn’t bring to you. I [even paid] for anything that was stolen during the day or night, 40 as I was dried out with the heat of the day, [chilled] by frost in the night, and I seldom ever got much sleep!

41 ‘During these twenty years that I stayed in your house, I served you for fourteen years for your two daughters. [Then I spent the next] six years among your sheep… just to have you fraudulently set my wages as ten lambs! 42 If it weren’t for the God of my father AbraHam and for the fact that [you’re] afraid of IsaAc’s [God], you would have even sent me away empty-handed! And it was because God saw how I was humiliated and how hard I’ve worked that He [scolded you] last night!’

43 Then Laban replied: ‘These are my daughters and my sons… the cattle are mine, and everything that you see belongs to my daughters and me! However, what should I do to them today, or to their children? 44 Come; let’s conclude a treaty between you and me that will serve as a witness between us. Look, nobody else is here, so {Look!} God will serve as the witness between you and me.’

45 Then Jacob found a [large] stone and erected it as a pillar. 46 And Jacob told his family: ‘Gather some stones.’ So they brought stones and made a pile; then they [shared bread] on top of the pile.

And thereafter, Laban said: ‘This [pile of stones] is the witnesses between you and me today.’ 47 And Laban called it The [Stone] Pile of Testimony, while Jacob referred to it as The Witness [Stone] Pile.

48 And Laban said to Jacob: ‘Look at this pile and pillar that I’ve erected between you and me… this Witness [Stone] Pile and this [Stone] Pile of Testimony. We will call them, the [Stone] Pile Witnesses.’

49 And thereafter, [Laban] called this place, The Watchtower; for he said: ‘May God keep watch over you and me, because we are about to leave each other. 50 But if you humble my daughters by taking women in addition to them, you will see that someone is with us who is watching. For God is the witness between you and me.’

51 Then Laban continued: ‘Look! This pile of stones and this pillar are witnesses 52 that I won’t come beyond this pillar to do anything bad to you, and you won’t come [beyond this pillar] to me. 53 May the God of AbraHam and the God of NaHor judge between us!’

Then Jacob swore by the fear of his father IsaAc, 54 and he offered a sacrifice on the mountain. He called his family together and they ate and drank, then they all went to sleep on the mountain. 55 And when Laban got up in the morning, he kissed his daughters and [their] sons and blest them, and then Laban turned around and went back to his home.

Chapter 32

1 Well, as Jacob [was about to] continue on his journey, he looked up and saw the camp of the army of God, and a messenger of God [coming to] meet him. 2 So when Jacob saw this, he said: ‘This [place] is the campground of God!’ So he named that place, Mahanahim (The Campgrounds).

3 Then Jacob sent messengers ahead of him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir and the country of the Edomites. 4 He told them to say to Esau, ‘Lord, this is what your servant Jacob has said: I have visited with Laban and stayed there until now. 5 And [during this time], oxen, burros, sheep, and male and female servants were born to me. Now I’ve sent [my messengers] to beg you, my lord Esau, to help your servant find favor in your eyes.’

6 Well, the messengers returned to Jacob and said: ‘We reached your brother Esau, and {Look!} now he’s coming to meet you with four hundred men!’

7 Jacob was upset and terrified by this. So he divided the people that were with him (as well as the cattle, camels, and sheep) into two camps. 8 And Jacob said: ‘If Esau comes to one camp and attacks it, the other camp will survive.’

9 Then Jacob [prayed]: ‘ O Jehovah, the God of my father AbraHam and the God of my father IsaAc… You’re the One who told me to get up and return to the land where I was born, and that You would treat me well. 10 So, please remember all the justice and truth that You’ve brought about through Your servant.

‘So now, with this walking stick of mine, I have crossed the JorDan [River] divided into two camps. 11 Please save me from the hands of my brother – from the hands of Esau – because I’m afraid of him, since [he may] enjoy coming here to strike me down with the mothers and the children. 12 However, you told me that You will treat me well and make my seed as the sands of the seas… so many that they can’t be counted.’

13 Well, after sleeping there that night, [he selected] gifts to be carried to his brother Esau. 14 [He sent] two hundred nanny goats, twenty billy goats, two hundred sheep, twenty rams, 15 thirty milk camels and their foals, forty cows, ten bulls, twenty burros, and ten colts. 16 He gave them to his servants and said to them: ‘Go ahead of me… and leave a space between each of the herds.’

17 Then he told the first group: ‘If you meet my brother Esau, and he asks, Who sent you, where are you headed, and whose animals are [being herded] in front of you? 18 you should say, [We were sent by] your servant Jacob. He is sending these as gifts to his lord Esau… {Look!} he’s [traveling] behind us.

19 And the same instructions that he gave to the first [group], he gave to the second and the third… to everyone who traveled ahead of him (following the herds). He said, ‘This is what you should tell Esau when you find him… 20 Look! Your servant Jacob is following behind us.’ I want to impress Esau with the gifts that [are being sent] ahead of me, so I can look him in the face and hope that he will accept me.’

21 So the gifts went out ahead of him, as he spent [part of] the night in the camp.

22 Then during the night, he got up and took his two women, the two female servants, and his eleven children, and they crossed the Jaboch River23 he led them and all his possessions through that raging river.

24 It was there that, while Jacob was all by himself, a man came and wrestled with him until the next morning. 25 [And when the man] saw that he wasn’t going to win, he touched the upper part of Jacob’s thigh, which became numb as they wrestled. 26 Then [the man] told [Jacob]: ‘Let me go, because the sun is coming up!’

But [Jacob] said: ‘I’m not going to let you go until you give me a blessing!’

27 So [the man] asked: ‘What is your name?’

And he answered, ‘Jacob.’

28 And [the man] told him: ‘Your name will no longer be Jacob. Rather, IsraEl will be your name; for you’ve grown stronger with God and mightier with men.’

29 Then Jacob said: ‘Tell me your name.’

And he said: ‘Why do you [have to] ask my name?’

So He blest him there, 30 and Jacob named that place, PeniEl (Face of God); for he said: ‘I’ve seen God face to face and survived.’

31 Well, the sun was up by the time he left PeniEl (the place where he had been stopped by his thigh). 32 And this is why to this day, the children of IsraEl will never eat the part of meat that is on the thigh, because that was the place on Jacob’s thigh that [God’s messenger] had numbed.

Chapter 33

1 Well when Jacob looked up, {Look!} he saw his brother Esau coming with four hundred men. So Jacob divided the children between LeAh, RachEl, and the two female servants. 2 Then he put the two female servants and their children out in front, followed by LeAh and her children, then RachEl, and [finally, himself] at the rear. 3 But then Jacob stepped out ahead of them all and bowed to the ground seven times, as he approached his brother.

4 Well at that, Esau ran up to meet him! He hugged him, fell around his neck and kissed him… and they both started crying.

5 Then when Esau noticed the women and children, he asked: ‘What are they to you?’

And Jacob replied: ‘They’re the children with which God has so mercifully blest your servant.’

6 Then the female servants and their children came up and bowed low, 7 followed by LeAh and her children who also came up and bowed low. And finally RachEl [arrived] and bowed down next to JoSeph.

8 So [Esau] asked: ‘Then, what did all those groups that I met along the way have to do with you?’

And [Jacob] replied: ‘This was done so that your servant might find favor in your eyes, my lord.’

9 Then Esau said: ‘But I [already own] much, my brother. Keep what is yours!’

10 And Jacob said: ‘If I’ve found favor in your eyes, take the gifts from my hands; for seeing your face is like seeing the face of God. If you are happy with me, 11 take the blessings that I’ve brought to you, because God has been merciful to me, and I have everything.’ And he kept insisting, so [Esau] took them. 12 Then he said: ‘Now, let’s head back.’

13 But [Jacob] said: ‘My lord; You know that the children are frail, and the flocks and herds that I’ve brought also have [many] young ones. So if I drive them hard today, these cattle will die. 14 Therefore, my lord; go on ahead of your servant… I’ll take it easy along the way, so [I’ll have] enough strength [to make the long journey] that’s still ahead of me, and so that the children will have enough strength. Then I will [meet up with] my lord at Seir.’

15 And Esau said: ‘Then let me leave some of my men with you.’

And [Jacob] asked: ‘Why? It’s enough that I’ve found your favor, my lord!’

16 So Esau returned to Seir that day, 17 and Jacob returned to the tents that he had set up to live in… and he also built pens for his cattle. So he named that place, SucCoth (The Pens).

18 Finally, Jacob arrived at Salem (Shechem’s city) in the land of CanaAn after traveling all the way from MesoPotamia of Syria. So he went to [the city gate] 19 and bought the field where he had pitched his tent from Hamor (the father of Shechem) for a hundred lambs. 20 And there he erected an altar, where he called upon his (IsraEl’s) God.

Chapter 34

1 Well, DinAh, the daughter that LeAh bore to Jacob, went to see the daughters of the local people. 2 And Shechem, the son of Hamor the Tent Dweller (and the ruler of the land), noticed her. Then he humiliated her by taking her and [having sex] with her. 3 Yet, he was deeply drawn to the person of DinAh, Jacob’s daughter… he loved the girl and spoke kindly to her. 4 So Shechem told his father Hamor: ‘Take this girl for me to be my woman.’

5 Well, when Jacob heard that Hamor’s son had violated his daughter DinAh, he sent for his sons who were out in the fields with his cattle. And Jacob didn’t say a word until they all got there. 6 Then Hamor, Shechem’s father, went over to talk to Jacob, 7 arriving just as Jacob’s sons were returning from the fields. Well when [Jacob’s sons] heard [what had happened], they were very upset. It really hurt them, because he’d made a joke of IsraEl by [having sex] with Jacob’s daughter… it just shouldn’t have happened.

 8 But Hamor spoke to them and said: ‘My son Shechem has decided in his heart to marry your daughter; so give her to him to be his woman… 9 come and marry among us. Give us your daughters, and take our daughters for your sons… 10 come live among us! Look, there’s plenty of room for you, so live here in this land… trade [with us] and prosper here!’

11 Then Shechem said to [DinAh’s] father and brothers: ‘I’ll do whatever I must to find your favor, and we’ll give you whatever you ask. 12 Raise the bride price several times and I’ll pay whatever you say. Just give me this girl to be my woman!’

13 However, Jacob’s sons answered Shechem and his father Hamor cunningly, because he had violated their sister DinAh. 14 DinAh’s brothers (SimeOn and Levi) said to them: ‘We won’t be able to give our sister to someone who isn’t circumcised, because that would dishonor us. 15 The only way we can do what you say and live among you, is if you will become as we are… all your males must be circumcised. 16 Then we will give our daughters to you and take your daughters as our women and live with you as one race. 17 But if you refuse to listen and won’t get circumcised, we will just take our [sister] and leave.’

18 Well, what they said was agreeable to Hamor and his son Shechem. 19 And the young man didn’t delay when it came to doing this thing, because he was really attached to Jacob’s daughter. Why, he was the most honorable person in his father’s house.

20 So Hamor and his son Shechem walked to the city gate and told the men there, 21 ‘These are peaceable people, so let them live with us in our land and trade in it. Look, there’s a lot of land before them, so we will take their daughters to be our women and we’ll give them our daughters. 22 The only thing that they require to live among us as one people, is that all our males must be circumcised, just as they are circumcised. 23 And then, won’t their cattle, their herds, and their possessions be ours? So, let’s do what they say and then they will live among us!’

24 Well, everyone who was there at the city gate listened to Hamor and his son Shechem, and the foreskins of all the males were circumcised. 25 But on the third day, while they were all aching in pain, Jacob’s two sons (DinAh’s brothers, SimeOn and Levi) each took his sword and crept into the city, then they killed every male… 26 they killed Hamor and his son Shechem with their swords, and then they took DinAh from Shechem’s house and left. 27 And when Jacob’s [other] sons came upon those who were wounded, they ravaged the city where DinAh (their sister) had been violated… 28 they took all the sheep, oxen, burros, and everything in the city, as well as everything that was in their fields. 29 Then they took all the people as captives (all their provisions and all their women) and they looted whatever was left in their city and in their homes.

30 Well afterward, Jacob said to SimeOn and Levi: ‘You have made me an evil and hated [person] among the people who live in this land… all the CanaAnites and the Pherezites. And now, since there are only a few of us, they will band against me and cut me to pieces, destroying both me and my house!’

31 And they replied: ‘Not so! Would [you rather] have them treat our sister as a whore?’

Chapter 35

1 Then God told Jacob: ‘Get up and go to the place [you named] BethEl, and live there. Then build an altar to the God that appeared to you there, when you were running from your brother Esau.’

2 So Jacob told his family and everyone that lived with him: ‘You must get rid of any strange gods that you may have, then wash yourselves, change your clothes, 3 and get ready, because we’re going up to BethEl, where we will build an altar to the God who listened to me, was with me, and kept me safe throughout my journey and trials.’

4 So they gave Jacob all the strange gods that they owned and the earrings in their ears; and Jacob buried [these things] under a turpentine tree at Shechem, where they’ve remained destroyed down to this day. 5 Then IsraEl left Shechem, and because the cities around them had the fear of The God in them, they didn’t chase after the children of IsraEl.

6 Well, Jacob and all the people that were with him finally arrived at Luza in the land of CanaAn, which [he had earlier named] BethEl; 7 for it was there that he had built an altar and called it ‘the House of God,’ since that’s the place where God appeared to him as he was running from his brother Esau.

8 Well thereafter, RebecKa’s nurse DeborAh died, and she was buried under an oak tree in BethEl that Jacob then named, AlLon-BaCuth (Oak Tree of Mourning).

9 It was at Luza that God appeared to Jacob as he was on his way back from MesoPotamia of Syria, and that’s when God blest him 10 and told him: ‘You will no longer be called Jacob; IsraEl will be your name.’ So that’s when He first referred to him as IsraEl.

11 Then God said to him: ‘I am your God, so prosper and grow… nations and groups of nations will descend from you, and kings will come from your loins. 12 I will give this land to you that I gave to AbraHam and IsaAc, as well as to the seed that descends from you.’

13 Then God left him there in that place where He spoke to him. 14 And Jacob erected a [stone] pillar [to honor] the place where he had been spoken to by God, pouring a drink offering and oil upon it. 15 And that’s when Jacob actually named this place where God spoke to him, BethEl (House of God).

16 [Well, after DeborAh died], Jacob left BethEl and pitched his tent beyond the tower of Gader. And as they were getting close to ChabRatha, on their way to EphRatha, RachEl had birth pains and then went into hard labor. 17 And it was while she was in hard labor that the midwife told her, ‘Don’t worry, you’re going to have this son!’

18 Then, as she was giving up her life (she was dying), she named him BenOni (Son of My Pain); but his father named him BenJamin (Son of My Right Hand).

19 So RachEl died and was buried along the road to EphRatha (BethLehem). 20 And Jacob erected a pillar over her tomb, [which is referred to as] The Pillar of RachEl’s Tomb to this day.

21 It was while IsraEl was living in this land that ReuBen went and [had sex] with BalLa, his father’s (Jacob’s) concubine. And when IsraEl heard about this, it really upset him.

22 Now, there were twelve sons of Jacob. 23 The sons of LeAh were Jacob’s first-born ReuBen, then SimeOn, Levi, Judah, IshSachar, and ZebuLon. 24 The sons of RachEl were JoSeph and BenJamin. 25 The sons of BalLa (RachEl’s handmaid) were Dan and NaphTali. 26 And the sons of ZelPha (Leah’s handmaid) were Gad and Asher. These sons were born to Jacob in MesoPotamia of Syria.

27 Then Jacob returned to his father IsaAc in MamRe, to a city of the plains [called] Hebron (in the land of CanaAn), where AbraHam and IsaAc had stayed. 28 For IsaAc had lived a hundred and eighty years 29 before he stopped breathing and died. Then his sons Esau and Jacob buried him beside his family, after he had lived a long and full life.

Chapter 36

1 And these are the generations of Esau (or Edom). 2 Esau took these women from the daughters of the CanaAnites: There was Ada (the daughter of AiLom the Chettite), OliBema (the daughter of Ana [who was] the son of SebeGon the Hivite), 3 and BaseMath (the daughter of IshMaEl and the sister of NabaiOth).

4 Ada bore EliPhas to [Esau], BaseMath bore RaguEl, 5 and OliBema bore Jeus, Jeglom, and Core. These were Esau’s sons that were born to him in the land of CanaAn.

6 Then Esau took his women, his sons, his daughters, and everyone in his house, along with all his possessions, all his cattle… yes, everything that he had and absolutely everything that he’d acquired in the land of CanaAn, and he left the land of CanaAn [to get away from] his brother Jacob, 7 because they had both acquired so much that they could no longer live close to each other; for the land where they were staying couldn’t hold them, since they had so much. 8 So Esau [went to live] at Mount Seir (Esau is Edom).

9 These are the generations of Esau (the father of the Edomites) when [he lived at] Mount Seir, 10 and these are the names of Esau’s [grand]sons through EliPhas (Ada’s son) and RaguEl (BaseMath’s son).

11 The [grand]sons of Ada through EliPhas were ThaEman, Omar, Sophar, Gothom, and Kenez. 12 Also, ThamNa (EliPhas’ concubine) bore Amalec to him.

13 The [grand]sons of BaseMath through RaguEl were NachOth, ZaRe, SoMe, and MoZe.

14 These are the sons of Esau’s woman OliBema (the daughter of Ana, who was the son of SebeGon): She bore JeUs, JegLom, and CoRe to Esau.

15 These are the chiefs of EliPhas, the first-born of Esau: Chief ThaEman, Chief Omar, Chief Sophar, Chief Kenez, 16 Chief CoRe, Chief Gothom, and Chief Amalec. They are the chiefs of [the family of] EliPhas (the sons of Ada), in the land of Edom.

17 And these are the chiefs of RaguEl, the son of Esau: Chief NachOth, Chief ZaRe, Chief SoMe, and Chief MoZe. They are the chiefs of [the family of] RaguEl (the sons of BaseMath) in the land of Edom.

18 And these are the chiefs of OliBema (the daughter of Ana), Esau’s woman: Chief JeUs, Chief JegLom, and Chief CoRe.

19 These were the sons of Esau. They are [all] chiefs, and they are [all] the sons of Edom.

20 These are the sons of SeIr the ChorRhite who lived in the land: LoTan, SoBal, SebeGon, Ana, 21 DeSon, Asar, and Rison. And these are the chiefs of the son of SeIr the ChorRhite, in the land of Edom: 22 The sons of LoTan and his sister ThamNa were ChorRhi and HaEman. 23 The sons of SoBal were GoLam, ManaChath, GaEbel, Sophar, and Omar. 24 The sons of SebeGon were Aie, and Ana (this is the same Ana who found Jamin in the desert when he was tending his father SebeGon’s animals).

25 Ana’s children were DeSon (his son) and OliBema (his daughter).

26 DeSon’s sons were Amada, AsBan, IthRan, and CharRhan. 27 Asar’s sons were BalaAm, ZuCam, and JuCam. 28 Rison’s sons were Hos, and Aran.

29 These are the chiefs of the ChorRites: Chief LoTan, Chief SoBal, Chief SebeGon, Chief Ana, 30 Chief DeSon, Chief Asar, and Chief Rison. They are the chiefs of the ChorRites in their own principalities in the land of Edom.

31 These are the kings that reigned in Edom before [the time of] the kings of IsraEl: 32 Balac (the son of Beor) reigned in Edom, and his [capital] city was DenNaba. 33 After Balac died, Jobab (the son of Zara from BosorRha) reigned in his stead. 34 After Jobab died, Asom (from the land of the ThaEmanites) reigned in his stead. 35 After Asom died, Adad (the son of Barad, who cut off Midian in the plain of Moab) reigned in his stead. And his [capital] city was GetThaim.

36 After Adad died, SaMada of MasSecca reigned in his stead. 37 After SaMada died, Saul of RhoObOth by the River reigned in his stead. 38 After Saul died, BalLenon (the son of AchObor) reigned in his stead. 39 After BalLenon died, Arad (the son of Barad) reigned in his stead. The name of his [capital] city was Phogor, and the name of his woman was MeteBeel (the daughter of MatraIth, who was the son of MaiZoOb).

40 These are the names of the tribal chiefs of Esau in their areas, countries, and nations: Chief ThamNa, Chief Gola, Chief Jether, 41 Chief OliBema, Chief Helas, Chief Phinon, 42 Chief Kenez, Chief ThaEman, Chief Mazar, 43 Chief MagediEl, and Chief Zaphoin. They are the chiefs of Edom in the areas where they live and in the lands that they own. And this is Esau, the father of [all] Edom.

44 However, Jacob lived in the land where his father stayed, the land of CanaAn.

Chapter 37

1 And these are the generations of Jacob.

2 JoSeph was seventeen years old, and because he was so young, he was accompanied by his brothers (the sons of his father’s women BalLa and ZelPha) as he grazed the sheep. And [at the time], they were speaking of their father IsraEl in an evil way because of JoSeph, 3 since Jacob loved JoSeph more than the rest of his sons (he was the son of his old age). And because [Jacob] had just made a multi-colored coat for him,4 his brothers could see that their father loved him more, so they hated him and never spoke to him in a peaceful way.

5 Then JoSeph had a dream, and he told his brothers about it. 6 He said, ‘Listen to what I dreamed: 7 I saw you bundling stalks of grain in the middle of the field; and then suddenly my bundle stood straight up, and your bundles turned around and bowed low before mine.’

8 So his brothers asked, ‘[Does this mean] that you’re going to rule over us and you’re going to be our master?’ Well, this dream and the things he said made them hate him even more.

9 Then [JoSeph] had another dream, and he told his father and brothers about it, saying, ‘{Look!} I had another dream in which the sun, the moon, and eleven stars bowed low before me.’

10 But his father scolded him and asked, ‘What kind of a dream is that? Do you think that your mother, brothers, and I will come and bow to the ground before you?’

11 Nevertheless, although his brothers were jealous of him, his father paid attention to what he said.

12 Thereafter, his brothers went to Shechem to graze their father’s sheep. 13 And IsraEl said to JoSeph: ‘Your brothers are grazing the flocks at Shechem and I want you to go to them.’

And he replied: ‘Look, here I am.’

14 So IsraEl said: ‘Go there to see if your brothers and the sheep are doing well, then come back and report to me.’ So he sent him from the HebRon Valley to Shechem.

15 Well, a man later found him wandering in the fields and asked him, ‘What are you looking for?’

16 And he said, ‘I’m looking for my brothers. Tell me where they are grazing [their flocks].’

17 And the man said, ‘They’ve left here. I heard them say, Let’s go to Dothaim.

So JoSeph went after his brothers, and found them in Dothaim. 18 However, they spotted him in the distance before he got there, then they got together and wickedly started talking about killing him. 19 They were saying to each other, ‘Look, here comes the dreamer! 20 Come on, let’s kill him and then throw his [body] into a ravine. We can say, An evil wild animal ate him… then let’s see what his dreams amount to.’

21 But when ReuBen heard this, he saved [JoSeph] from them by saying, ‘Let’s not kill him.’ 22 Then [he suggested]: ‘Don’t shed [his] blood; let’s throw him into one of these deep crevices in the desert… but don’t lay a hand on him.’ ([Reuben] said this so that he could save [JoSeph] from them and return him safely to his father).

23 Well, when JoSeph reached his brothers, they took off the multi-colored coat that he was wearing, 24 then they took him and threw him into a deep crevice that was empty and didn’t have any water. 25 And thereafter, they sat down to eat some bread. Then when they looked up, they noticed {Look!} an IshMaElite caravan that was coming from GileAd (their camels were loaded down with spices, resin, and myrrh that they were carrying to Egypt). 26 And Judah said to his brothers: ‘What profit would it bring us if we kill our brother and just cover it up? 27 Let’s sell him to these IshMaElites instead. We don’t want to lay a hand on him, because he’s our brother and our own flesh.’

Well, his brothers listened to this; 28 so as the merchants of Midian were traveling through, [his brothers] pulled JoSeph out of the crevice and sold him to the IshMaElites for twenty gold coins… and [the IshMaElites] took JoSeph [with them] down to Egypt.

29 Then when ReuBen later returned to the crevice and saw that JoSeph wasn’t there, he started ripping his clothes 30 and he went to his brothers and said, ‘The boy isn’t [there]… where do I have to go [to find him]?’

31 Well after that, they killed a young goat and dipped JoSeph’s coat in its blood. 32 Then they took the multi-colored coat to their father and said: ‘We found this… do you recognize it as your son’s coat or not?’

Well, he recognized it and said, ‘It is my son’s coat! An evil wild animal has surely eaten him… a wild animal has carried off JoSeph!’

33 Then Jacob tore his clothes and covered the lower part of his body with sackcloth; and thereafter, he spent a long time mourning over his son. 34 Although all of his sons and daughters went there to comfort him, he didn’t want to be comforted. He said, ‘I will go to my grave mourning my son.’ And his father kept crying over him.

35 Well, when they got to Egypt, the Midianites sold JoSeph to Potiphar, Pharaoh’s councilor and captain of the guard.

Chapter 38

1 After that, Judah left his brothers and he traveled for some distance, arriving [at the home] of an OdolLamite named Iras. 2 And while he was there, Judah found the daughter of a CanaAnite man named Sava. He took her [as his woman] and [slept] with her, 3 and she got pregnant. Then she gave birth to a son whom she named Er. 4 And after that, she got pregnant again and gave birth to a son whom she named AuNan. 5 Then she gave birth to a [third] son whom she named SeLom (she was living in Chasbi when she gave birth to them).

6 [Well, years later], Judah took a woman named Tamar to be the wife of his first-born son, Er. 7 But Er was wicked before Jehovah, so God killed him. 8 Then Judah told Aunan: ‘You must go and [have sex] with your brother’s woman… since you’re her brother-in-law, you must take her so [she can] raise a seed for your brother.’

9 However, Aunan knew that the seed wouldn’t be [counted as] his. So when he [had sex with] his brother’s woman, he spilled [his semen] on the ground, so his brother’s woman wouldn’t [get pregnant]. 10 And his doing this appeared evil to God, so He killed him also.

11 Then Judah said to his daughter-in-law Tamar: ‘Live as a widow in your father’s house until my son SeLom grows up… for I don’t want him to die like his brothers.’ So Tamar left and went to stay in her father’s home.

12 Well after several years, Judah’s woman Sava died. So while Judah was looking for comfort, he went to see his sheep shearers at ThamNa, along with his Shepherd, Iras the OdolLamite. 13 And when his daughter-in-law Tamar was told, ‘{Look!} Your father-in-law is going up to ThamNa to shear his sheep,’ 14 she took off her widow’s clothes, put on a veil and made up her face, and she went to sit by the gate of [the town of] AiNan, along the road that leads to ThamNa. She did this because [Judah’s son] Selom had already grown up and [Judah] hadn’t given [Tamar] to be his son’s woman.

15 Well when Judah saw her, he thought she was a prostitute, because she had her face covered and he didn’t recognize her. 16 So he stopped and said to her (not knowing that she was his daughter-in-law), ‘Let me [have sex with] you.’

And she asked, ‘What will you give to [have sex] with me?’

17 And he said, ‘I’ll send you a young goat from my flock.’

And she told him: ‘You must provide me some assurance that you’ll send it.’

18 So he asked, ‘What kind of assurance can I give you?’

And she said: ‘Give me your ring, your bracelet, and the walking stick you’re holding.’

So he gave them to her, [had sex with] her, and she got pregnant by him. 19 Then she got up and took off her veil, put her widow’s clothes back on, and left that place.

20 Well later, Judah sent the young goat with his shepherd (the OdolLamite), to get back the things that he had left with the woman… but he couldn’t find her. 21 So he asked the local men: ‘Where’s that prostitute who used to sit by the road [here at] AiNan?’

And they replied: ‘There was no prostitute here.’

22 So he returned to Judah and said: ‘I couldn’t find her, and the local men say there wasn’t any prostitute there.’

23 Then Judah told him: ‘Let her have [those things]. Although I sent the young goat, you couldn’t find her; so let’s not leave ourselves open to ridicule.’

24 Well after three months, Judah was told: ‘Your daughter-in-law Tamar has played the whore… and now look; she’s pregnant by her whoring!’

So Judah said: ‘Then drag her out and have her burned!’

25 But as they were dragging her out, she called out to her father-in-law, and said: ‘I’m pregnant by the man who owns these things… just whose ring, bracelet, and walking stick are these?’

26 Well, Judah recognized them [as his] and said: ‘Tamar is innocent… but not me, because I didn’t give her to my son Selom.’ And that was the last time [Judah had sex] with her.

27 Then when she went into labor, it was found that she had twins in her womb. 28 And as they were being born, one pushed his hand out. So the midwife took hold of the hand and tied some scarlet [thread around it], and said, ‘This is the firstborn.’

29 But then he drew his hand back and his brother came out immediately thereafter. And she asked, ‘Why have you broken the barrier between you?’ So she named him Phares (Breach).

30 It was then that his brother (around whose hand the scarlet thread was tied) was born. And she named him Zara (Scarlet).

Chapter 39

1 Meanwhile, JoSeph had been taken down to Egypt, where an Egyptian named Potiphar ([who was] Pharaoh’s councilor and captain of the guard) bought him from the IshMaElites who had carried him there.

2 But Jehovah was with JoSeph and He blest him as he was living in the house of his Egyptian master. 3 Even [Potiphar] recognized that Jehovah was with [JoSeph] and that He was blessing everything he did; 4 so JoSeph was treated kindly by him, and [JoSeph did everything he could to] please his master well. Therefore, soon JoSeph was put in charge of his [master’s] house… he was appointed to be in charge of everything that [his master] owned. 5 And because he put JoSeph in charge of his house and over everything that he owned, Jehovah blest the Egyptian’s house for JoSeph’s sake. He blest everything that the man had in his house and in his fields, 6 because he had entrusted everything he owned into JoSeph’s hands. So the man didn’t even know what belonged to him, other than the bread that he ate.

Well, JoSeph was extremely attractive… he had an excellent body and a very handsome face. 7 And so, after he had been [put in charge of the house], his master’s woman eyed JoSeph and said: ‘[Have sex] me.’ 8 But he wouldn’t. He told his master’s woman: ‘Look, it’s because of me that my master doesn’t even know what’s going on in his own house! He has put everything that he owns into my hands. 9 Nobody in this house is over me, nor has anything been withheld from me, except you… and you’re his woman! So, how could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?’

10 Still, she pleaded with JoSeph every day… but he wouldn’t listen to her requests to sleep with her.

11 Then one day, as JoSeph entered the house to do his work, he found that none of the household staff was around. 12 That’s when she grabbed him by his clothes and said, ‘[Have sex] with me.’ But he left his clothes there in her hands and ran from the house.

13 Well, when she saw that he had left his clothes in her hands and ran away, 14 she called [the family] and said: ‘You see; He has brought in a Hebrew slave to make fun of us! Why, he came in and told me that he wanted to have sex with me, but I screamed. 15 And when he heard me scream, he left his clothes here and ran out of the house!’

16 So she kept the clothes close by, and when [her husband] got back home, 17 she said to him: ‘This Hebrew servant that you brought to us came here to make fun of me! He said to me, I’m going to [have sex] you. 18 But after he heard me scream, he left his clothes with me and ran out of the house.’

19 Well, when his master heard everything his woman said, he proclaimed, ‘Then he did it to me!’ 20 And because he was so angry, his master took JoSeph and had him thrown in prison… into the place where the king’s prisoners were kept.

21 Nevertheless, Jehovah was with JoSeph and He was very merciful to him. So He helped him find favor in the eyes of the prison’s warden. 22 Therefore, the warden put JoSeph in charge of the prison along with all the prisoners who were there and everything that they did. 23 So the warden was unaware of what was going on there, because everything was in JoSeph’s hands. And Jehovah continued to bless everything that he was doing.

Chapter 40

1 It was some time after this that the king’s chief cupbearer and his chief baker had wronged their lord, the king of Egypt. 2 Pharaoh was furious with his two eunuchs (his chief cupbearer and his chief baker), 3 so he had them locked up in prison… in the same place where JoSeph was kept, 4 and the prison warden left them with JoSeph, who was to guard them.

Well, after they had spent some time in the prison, 5 they both had a dream one night. Each man had his own dream and each dream had its own interpretation.

6 Then the next morning when JoSeph went in to see them, they were both quite disturbed. 7 So he asked Pharaoh’s eunuchs who were there in the prison with him, ‘Why are you so sad today?’

8 And they replied: ‘We have [both] seen [visions] in our dreams, and nobody knows what they mean.’

So JoSeph said: ‘Doesn’t the interpretation of [dreams come] through God? Tell [me what you saw]!’

9 And the chief cupbearer told JoSeph his dream. He said, ‘In my dream [I saw] a vine 10 that had three stems which budded and put out blossoms; then [it formed] clusters of grapes that ripened. 11 Then after that, [I found] Pharaoh’s cup in my hands. So I took the grapes and squeezed them into the cup, and then I gave the cup to Pharaoh.’

12 Well at that, JoSeph said to him, ‘This is what [the dream] means: The three stems are three days. 13 So in three days, Pharaoh will remember what you did and he will give you back your position as chief cupbearer. Therefore, you will [once again] put Pharaoh’s cup in his hands, holding the same high position that you once had as his cupbearer.’

14 [Then he continued], ‘Now, remember me when things are going well for you… be merciful to me and mention me to Pharaoh, so that I can be released from this dungeon. 15 You see; I was stolen from the land of the Hebrews. And though I’ve done nothing wrong here, I was thrown into this hole.’

16 Well, when the chief baker saw that he’d given [the first man] the right interpretation, he said to JoSeph: ‘I also had a dream. I remember looking up, and I found three baskets of bakery goods on top of my head. 17 In the top basket, there were all the kinds of things that Pharaoh enjoys. But birds in the sky came and ate them out of the basket that was on my head.’

18 Then JoSeph told him, ‘This is what it means: The three baskets are three days. 19 So in three days, Pharaoh will cut off your head and hang you on a tree, where the birds of the sky will eat your flesh.’

20 Well, three days later, it was Pharaoh’s birthday when he held a banquet for all his servants. It was then that he remembered the offices that the cupbearer and the baker once held among them. 21 So he restored the chief cupbearer to his office, and once again he put Pharaoh’s cup into his hands. 22 However, he hanged the chief baker, just as JoSeph foretold. 23 But then, the chief cupbearer soon forgot about JoSeph.

Chapter 41

1 It was a full two years later that Pharaoh (likely AmenemHat 1) also had a dream. He dreamed that he was standing next to a river, 2 then {Look!} he saw seven fat and good-looking cows come up out of the water to feed at the river’s edge. 3 And after that, seven more cows, which were skinny and ugly, came up out of the river to feed along its banks. 4 Then the seven skinny, ugly cows ate the seven fat and good-looking cows… and that’s when Pharaoh woke up.

5 Then he had another dream. {Look!} There were seven large and good-looking [heads] of grain that grew on a single stalk. 6 And {Look!} they were followed by [a stalk] with seven thin and windblown [heads] that grew up alongside them. 7 Then the [stalk] with the seven thin and windblown [heads] ate the ones with the seven large, good-looking [heads]… and that’s when Pharaoh woke up… and it was just a dream.

8 Well the next morning, he was deeply disturbed [by the dreams], so he sent for all the [dream] interpreters of Egypt and all the wise men. Pharaoh told them of his dreams, but no one could tell him what they meant. 9 And that’s when Pharaoh’s chief cupbearer told him: ‘I just remembered something that I’m responsible for. 10 [You were once] quite angry with your servants and you had us imprisoned in the house of the captain of the guard… both the chief baker and me. 11 Each of us had a dream in that same night (both him and me)… but we each had our own dream. 12 And there was a young man with us, a Hebrew servant of the captain of the guard, to whom we told [our dreams], and he interpreted [them] to us. 13 Well, everything that he said would happen, came true… I was restored to my office and [the baker] was hanged.’

14 So Pharaoh sent and called for JoSeph… they took him from the prison, shaved him and changed his clothes; then he went in to Pharaoh. 15 And Pharaoh said to JoSeph: ‘I had a vision that no one can interpret, and I’ve heard that you have listened to dreams and interpreted them.’

16 But JoSeph answered Pharaoh, saying: ‘Without God, [I couldn’t] give a safe answer to Pharaoh.’

17 Then Pharaoh told JoSeph: ‘In my dream, I was standing by the bank of the river. 18 Then out of the river came seven fat and good-looking cows that fed along the river’s edge. 19 And after that, {Look!} seven more cows came up out of the river that were evil, skinny, and ugly… I’ve never seen worse in the entire land of Egypt. 20 Then the seven skinny, ugly cows ate the seven fat and good-looking cows… 21 they swallowed them down whole; yet, I couldn’t see that they had gone into their stomachs, because they still looked as ugly as they did before.

‘And after I woke up, I went to sleep again. 22 Then I saw what looked like seven large, good-looking [heads] of grain growing from a single stalk. 23 And [after that, I saw] seven more [heads] that were thin and windblown, coming up next to them. 24 Then the seven thin and wind-blown [heads] ate the seven large, good-looking [heads]. Now, I told all this to the [dream] interpreters, but none of them could explain it to me.’

25 So JoSeph told Pharaoh: ‘Both of your dreams are the same, for God has shown Pharaoh what He’s going to do.

26 ‘The seven good-looking cows mean seven years, and the seven good-looking [grain heads] mean seven years… so Pharaoh’s dreams are both the same! 27 Also, the seven skinny cattle that came up after them mean seven years, and the seven thin and windblown [heads] mean seven years… therefore, there will be seven years of famine.

28 ‘Now, what I’m telling Pharaoh is that it’s God’s purpose to show you what He’s going to do. 29 And look! Seven years are coming when there will be a great abundance throughout the land of Egypt; 30 but they will be followed by seven years of famine, which will be so bad that the abundance Egypt had will be forgotten, and famine will consume the land. 31 Yes, the abundance in the land will be gone because of the famine that will follow, since it’s going to be an extremely bad time. 32 And the fact that Pharaoh saw the dream twice, proves that the things I’m telling you (which will come from God) are true; for God will cause it to happen very soon!

33 ‘Therefore, search for a wise and discerning man, and put him in charge over the land of Egypt. 34 Also, Pharaoh should appoint local governors over the land who must collect a fifth of all the produce in the land of Egypt during the seven abundant years. 35 They must gather all the food that will come in during the seven good years, and have all the grain gathered into the hands of Pharaoh… and you must store the food in each city. 36 This stored food will then [protect] the land during the seven years of famine that are coming upon Egypt, so [the country] won’t be totally destroyed by the famine.’

37 Well, what [JoSeph] said appeared good to Pharaoh and to all of his servants. 38 So [he] asked his servants: ‘Where can we find such a man as this… someone who has the Breath of God in him?’

39 Then Pharaoh said to JoSeph: ‘Since God has shown all of these things to you; is there a man who is wiser or more discerning than you? 40 I’ll appoint you to be over my house, and then all of my people must do whatever you say… only I will be greater than you on the throne.’

41 Then Pharaoh told JoSeph: ‘{Look!} Today, I’m putting you in charge of the entire land of Egypt.’ 42 And at that, Pharaoh took the ring off of his hand and put it on JoSeph’s hand, [he had him dressed in] a robe of fine linen, and put a gold chain around his neck. 43 Then he mounted [JoSeph] on his second-best chariot and had a herald walk in front of him to proclaim that [JoSeph] had been appointed over the whole land of Egypt. 44 And Pharaoh said to JoSeph: ‘Although I am the Pharaoh; nobody will lift his hand anywhere in the land of Egypt without [your permission].’

45 Thereafter, Pharaoh started calling JoSeph the Savior of the Age, and he gave him Asenath, the daughter of Petephre, the priest of HelioPolis (Greek for City of the Sun), to be his woman.

46 Well, JoSeph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh, the king of Egypt.

Then JoSeph left the presence of Pharaoh and traveled throughout the entire the land of Egypt. 47 And the land did in fact produce well during the seven years of abundance… by the heaping handfuls. 48 So during those seven years he gathered much food, because there was such abundance in the land, and he stored it away in each of the cities. He took the food that grew in the fields around each city and stored it in them. 49 so the grain that JoSeph stored away became like the sands of the seas… so much that it couldn’t be calculated.

50 Meanwhile, JoSeph had two sons born to him prior to the seven years of famine, by Asenath (the daughter of Petephre, the priest of HelioPolis). 51 And JoSeph named his firstborn ManasSeh (Forgotten), for he said, ‘God has made me forget all my hard work, and even the house of my father.’ 52 Then he named his second son Ephraim (Double Fruitfulness); for he said, ‘God has caused me to grow in the land where I was humiliated.’

53 Well, the seven years of abundance in the land of Egypt soon passed, 54 and then the seven years of famine began, just as JoSeph had said. However, though there was a famine throughout the entire earth, there was plenty [in Egypt]. 55 Then, when the people of Egypt got hungry, they called out to Pharaoh for bread, and Pharaoh said to [them]: ‘Go to JoSeph and do whatever he tells you to do.’

56 Well before long, the famine covered the entire earth; so JoSeph opened all the granaries and sold [the stored grain] to the Egyptians. 57 Then all the countries roundabout started coming to Egypt to buy [food] from JoSeph, because the famine had become [so widespread].

Chapter 42

1 Now, Jacob had noticed that they were still selling [grain] in Egypt. So he said to his sons: ‘Why don’t you do something? 2 Look; I’ve heard that there is grain in Egypt. Go there and buy us a little food, so we don’t starve to death.’ 3 Therefore, JoSeph’s ten brothers went down to Egypt to purchase grain. 4 However, JoSeph’s brother BenJamin wasn’t sent along with his brothers, ‘So he doesn’t get sick,’ Jacob said.

5 Of course, the Sons of IsraEl [traveled along with] many others to buy [grain], because the famine had affected the entire land of CanaAn.

6 Well, since JoSeph was the ruler of the land, he’s the one who sold [food] to all the people who were coming from these lands; so JoSeph’s brothers came to him and had to bow with their faces to the ground before him. 7 But when JoSeph saw his brothers (because he recognized them), he hid himself in front of them and spoke harshly to them, asking, ‘Where are you coming from?

And they replied, ‘[We came from] the land of CanaAn to buy food.’

8 Well, although JoSeph recognized his brothers, they didn’t recognize him. 9 Then JoSeph remembered his dreams and the things that he saw, and he said to them: ‘You are spies! Why, you’ve come here to spy in our land!’

10 But they said: ‘No Sir; we’re just your servants who have come to buy food! 11 We’re all the sons of one man and we are peace loving… your servants aren’t spies!’

12 And he said to them: ‘No, you’ve come to spy [in our] land!’

13 Then they replied: ‘Your servants were once twelve brothers from the land of CanaAn. The youngest [of us] is with our father right now… but the other one is no more.’

14 Then JoSeph argued: ‘It’s just as I said; you’re spies! 15 Here’s how I will prove it: By the health of Pharaoh, you aren’t going to leave until your younger brother comes here. 16 One of you can go to get your brother, but the rest of you will stay in jail until what you’ve said can be [proven]… whether you’re telling the truth or not. And if not, then by the health of Pharaoh, you really are spies!’

17 So he had them all locked up in jail for three days. 18 Then on the third day, he said, ‘Do this and you will live, because I fear the gods (gr. ton Theon): 19 If you really are peace loving, I’ll allow just one of your brothers to be held in jail. So now, go and carry the grain that you bought [back to your home]. 20 Then bring your younger brother to me, and I will believe what you said. But if you don’t, you will all die!’

And that’s what they did.

21 Well, each one was saying to his brother: ‘Yes, we are to blame when it comes to our brother. We didn’t pay attention to the anguish that he was going through, and when he looked to us, we didn’t listen to him. That’s why this bad thing is happening to us!’

22 Then ReuBen said: ‘Didn’t I tell you not to harm the boy? But you wouldn’t listen to me! Now look… his blood is [being avenged]!’

23 However, they didn’t realize that JoSeph was standing right there in front of them, because an interpreter stood between them.

24 Well at that, JoSeph left them and started crying. Then he returned and spoke to them, and he took SimeOn and had him bound before their eyes.

25 And thereafter, JoSeph gave orders to fill their [sacks] with grain, and to return the money to each one’s sack before giving them permission to leave. And that’s what happened… 26 the grain was loaded on their burros, and then they left.

27 Well, when they stopped somewhere to rest, one of them opened his sack to feed the burros, and that’s when he saw his bundle of money lying in the top of his sack. 28 So he said to his brothers: ‘They’ve returned my money. Look, its all here in my sack!’

Well, they were all dumbfounded and sick at heart. And they asked each other: ‘What has God done to us?’

29 And when they got back to their father Jacob (in the land of CanaAn), they told him everything that had happened to them, saying: 30 ‘This man who is the lord of the land spoke harshly to us and had us put in jail as spies. 31 But we told him that we are peaceful men… we aren’t spies. 32 We said that we are twelve brothers, the sons of our father. One [of us] is no more, and the youngest is with our father today in the land of CanaAn. 33 However, this man who is the lord of the land said to us, Here’s how I will know that you are peaceful: Leave one of your brothers here with me and take the grain you bought, then return to your family 34 and bring your younger brother to me so I will know that you aren’t spies, but men of peace. Then you can have your brother back and you can trade in this land.

35 ‘But, as we were emptying our sacks, each man found his bundle of money inside his sack.’ So they [showed] their father their bundles of money, and they were all frightened.

36 Then their father (Jacob) said to them: ‘Now you’ve made me very sad, for JoSeph is no more and neither is SimeOn. So, are you going to take BenJamin away also? [Why have] all these [bad] things come upon me?’

37 Then ReuBen said to his father: ‘You can kill my two sons if I don’t bring him back to you. Give him to me, and I’ll bring him back!’

38 But [Jacob] said: ‘I won’t allow my son to go with you, because his brother is already dead, and he’s the only one left. What if something happens to him on the way? This would bring such sorrow upon me in my old age that it would lead me to my grave.’

Chapter 43

1 However, the famine continued in the land. 2 And so, after they had finished eating the grain that they’d brought from Egypt, their father told them: ‘Go there to buy us a little food again.’

3 But Judah said to him: ‘That man who’s the lord of the land absolutely warned us, saying, You may not see my face again unless you have your younger brother with you. 4 So, if you’ll send our brother with us, we’ll go and buy you food. 5 But if you won’t send our brother with us, we won’t go.’

6 Then IsraEl asked: ‘Why did you do so much harm to me by telling the man that you had a brother?’

7 And they replied: ‘The man asked a lot of questions about our family. He asked, Is your father still alive? and, Do you have you a brother? All we did was answer his questions! How could we know that he would tell us to bring our brother?’

8 Then Judah said to his father IsraEl: ‘Send the boy with me and we’ll go… so we don’t all [starve] to death! 9 I’ll be responsible for him, and you can hold me to blame if anything happens to him. If I don’t return him and stand him before you, I will be guilty before you through the age. 10 If we hadn’t been delaying, we could could have already have gone there a second time!’

11 And their father IsraEl said to them, ‘If that’s the case, then do this: Take along the fruit of the land in your sacks. Carry gifts of gum, honey, frankincense, oil of myrrh, turpentine, and walnuts to the man. 12 Also, carry twice as much money – in addition to the money that was put back in your sacks – just in case that was a mistake. 13 Then take your brother along and go down to the man. 14 May my God allow you to find favor in the eyes of that man, so he sends you home with your other brother and BenJamin. For I’ve been saddened, and I’m very sad now.’

15 So the men loaded up their gifts and took twice as much money, as well as BenJamin, and headed down to Egypt, where they soon stood before JoSeph.

16 Well, when JoSeph saw them and his brother BenJamin (who was born to the same mother), he told his house manager: ‘Bring the men into [my] house, then butcher some animals and prepare them, because these men are to eat bread with me at noon.’

17 So the man did just as JoSeph said, and he brought them into JoSeph’s house.

18 Well, when the men realized that they had been taken to the house of JoSeph, they said: ‘We’ve been brought here because of the money that was returned to our sacks the first time. [This is being done] so witnesses can be called and we can be charged [with a crime]… then they will confiscate our burros and take us as slaves!’

19 So they went up to the man who was in charge of JoSeph’s house and spoke to him out on the porch. 20 They said, ‘We are begging you, sir… we just came the first time to buy food. 21 But as we were unloading and opening our sacks, [we found] this money in each sack. We have the full amount of money in our hands [and we wish] to return it. 22 We’ve also brought more money along to buy food with… we don’t know who put the money in our sacks!’

23 And [the man] replied: ‘May God be merciful with you. Don’t be afraid, for it was your God and the God of your ancestors who put the treasures in your sacks. I have enough of your good money!’

Then he brought SimeOn out to them… 24 as well as water to wash their feet and fodder for their burros.

25 And after that, they started preparing their gifts for JoSeph’s arrival at noon, because they heard that he was going to dine there. 26 So when JoSeph came home, they brought him the gifts that they had carried into the house… and then they bowed with their faces to the ground.

27 Well he asked them: ‘How are you? Is your father, the old man that you spoke of, well? Is he still living?’

28 And they replied: ‘Our father, your servant, is well. And yes, he’s still alive.’

Then JoSeph said: ‘May that man of God be blest!’

And at that, they all bowed low to show him respect.

29 It was then that JoSeph looked up and saw his brother BenJamin (who was born to the same mother). And he asked, ‘Is this the younger brother that you said you would bring to me?’ Then he said, ‘May God have mercy on you, my son.’

30 Well, JoSeph’s emotions overcame him, because he missed his brother so much, and he wanted to cry. So he went to his inner room and cried there. 31 Then he washed his face and regained his composure, and came out and said: ‘Bring on the bread!’

32 So they set out bread for JoSeph, for his servants, and for the Egyptians who were eating with him, but not for [his brothers], because the Egyptians considered it dishonorable to eat bread with Hebrews. 33 They just sat there in front of him (in the order of their ages, from the firstborn to the youngest), as the brothers looked at each other in astonishment.

 34 Thereafter, JoSeph gave them their portions to eat by themselves. However, BenJamin received five times as much as did the rest. They also drank with him until each one was full.

Chapter 44

1 Then JoSeph gave instructions to his house manager. He said: ‘Fill the men’s sacks with as much food as they can carry, and put each one’s money in the top of his sack. 2 Also, put my silver cup in the sack that belongs to the youngest, along with the price of his grain.’ So he did exactly as JoSeph said. 3 Then the next morning, the men and their burros were sent away.

4 Well, after they left the city (but before they had traveled very far), JoSeph said to his house manager: ‘Now, get up and chase after those men; and when you catch up with them, ask: Why have you returned evil for good… 5 why have you stolen my silver cup? Isn’t this the [cup] that our lord drinks from and the one that he uses to foretell the future? You’ve done an evil thing!’

6 So when he caught up with them, he said what [JoSeph] told him to say. 7 And they replied, ‘Why is our lord saying such things? Your servants wouldn’t do anything like that. 8 If we returned the money to you that we found in our sacks all the way from the land of CanaAn, why would we steal silver or gold from the house of your lord? 9 May whichever of your servants that you find with the cup die, and then we will all be our lord’s slaves!’

10 So [JoSeph’s house manager] told them: ‘May it be just as you’ve said. But just the one who is found with the cup will be my slave… the rest of you can go free.’

11 Then each man quickly took down his sack and put it on the ground, and opened their sacks. 12 Then the man began his search, starting from the eldest to the youngest… and he found the cup in BenJamin’s sack. 13 Well at that, they all started ripping their clothes. Then each man put his sack back on his burro, and they all returned to the city, 14 where Judah and his brothers went to see JoSeph, who was [still at home].

There they fell to the ground before him, 15 and JoSeph asked them: ‘What have you done? Didn’t you realize that a man like me can see the future?’

16 And Judah replied: ‘What can we say to you, our lord? What can we say that will justify us? God has uncovered the unrighteousness of your servants. Look! We’re now our lord’s slaves… both us and the one who was found with your cup!’

17 But JoSeph said: ‘I wouldn’t do anything like that… just the man who was found with my cup will be my slave. [The rest of you] may return home safely to your father.’

18 Then Judah came up to him and said: ‘I beg you, sir; Allow your servant to say something to you, and don’t get angry, because you are next to Pharaoh. 19 Sir, you once asked your servants whether we have a father or a brother. 20 And we replied, Yes Lord, we have a father who is an old man, and he has a young son of his old age. [Since this boy’s] brother is now dead, he’s the only one left who came from his mother, and his father loves him.

21 ‘Then you said to your servants: Bring him down here to me, and I will take care of him. 22 And we said to our lord, The child can’t leave his father, because if he leaves his father, [his father] will die. 23 But you told your servants: Unless your younger brother comes down with you, you won’t see my face again. 24 And so, when we went up to your servant our father, we told him what our lord said. 25 Then, when our father said, Return and buy a little food for us, 26 we said, We can’t return, unless our younger brother goes with us. We can go there, but we won’t be able to see the man unless we bring our younger brother along! 27 And your servant (our father) said to us: You know that my woman gave birth to two [sons] for me. 28 Now, one [of the two] is gone from me. For you told me that wild animals ate him, and I haven’t seen him since. 29 So, if you take this one away from me also and something should happen to him along the road, the sorrow will bring me to the grave in my old age.

30 ‘Therefore, if I should return to your servant (our father) and the boy doesn’t return with us (remember that his life depends on this [boy’s] life); 31 well, when he sees that the boy isn’t with us, he will die. And then your servants [will be responsible for] bringing your servant (our elderly father) to his grave in his sorrow. 32 For when I (your servant) took the boy from his father, I said, If I don’t return him to you and stand him before you, I will be guilty before my father through the age.

33 ‘Now, may I stay here as your slave instead of the boy. I will work in my lord’s house; but let the boy [return home] with his brothers. 34 For, how could I return to my father without the boy and cause evil things to happen to him?’

Chapter 45

1 However, JoSeph couldn’t restrain himself when they were all standing there with him; so he said: ‘Everyone is dismissed.’ As the result, nobody [was there guarding] JoSeph when he told his brothers who he was… 2 and as he spoke, he was crying.

Well, soon all the Egyptians heard about this, and it was reported to the house of Pharaoh. 3 For JoSeph said to his brothers, ‘I’m JoSeph! Is my father still alive?’

However, his brothers couldn’t answer him, because they were in shock!

4 Then JoSeph told his brothers: ‘Come closer to me,’ and they all came up to him. And he said: ‘I’m your brother JoSeph whom you sold into Egypt! 5 But don’t be upset and don’t feel guilty that you sold me here, because [it was] God who sent me ahead of you, so you could live. 6 For, this [is just] the second year of the famine on the earth, and there are still five years to come when there will be no plowing or reaping. 7 It was God who sent me ahead of you so that some of you would survive on the earth to feed the rest of your crowd. 8 Therefore, you didn’t send me here, God did! And now He has made me like a father to Pharaoh… the master of his whole house and the ruler of the entire land of Egypt. 9 So, hurry and return to my father, and tell him that this is what your son JoSeph has said: God has made me the lord of the entire land of Egypt. So, come here to me, and don’t delay! 10 You will live in the land of Gesem in Arabia, where you will be close me… you, your sons, your grandsons, your sheep, your cattle, and everything that’s yours. 11 I will feed you there, because the famine is going to last for five more years. This way, nothing that you own will be lost… not your sons or any of your possessions!

12 ‘Look at me and see! And [you], my brother BenJamin; Use your eyes [and recognize] that it’s my mouth speaking to you! 13 So, report to my father about all the glory that I have in Egypt, and about everything that you’ve seen. Then hurry and bring my father down here.’

14 [Well, after that], he fell on his brother BenJamin’s neck and cried, and BenJamin cried on his neck. 15 Then he kissed all his brothers and cried over them, and his brothers [were finally able to] speak to him.

16 Well, the report of this was carried back to the house of Pharaoh, for he was told, ‘JoSeph’s brothers have come.’ And this made Pharaoh and his household very happy.

17 Then Pharaoh said to JoSeph: ‘Tell your brothers to [get] wagons and return to the land of CanaAn 18 to get their father and all their possessions, and then come here to me. I will give them all the good things of Egypt, and they will eat from the [best] of our land.

19 ‘Now, you must give them these instructions: Tell them to take wagons from the land of Egypt to get their women, their children, and their father, and come here. 20 [Tell them] not to worry about their possessions, because all the good things of Egypt will be theirs.’

21 So that’s what the children of IsraEl did. JoSeph gave them wagons, just as Pharaoh the king had said, and he gave them the things they would need for their journey. 22 He also gave each of them two suits of clothes… but he gave BenJamin five suits of clothes, plus three hundred gold coins. 23 And he sent the same gifts to his father, plus ten burros that carried a sampling of all the good things of Egypt, along with ten mules that carried [provisions] for their journey.

24 So he dismissed his brothers and they left. But before they left, he told them: ‘Don’t go away angry.’

25 Then they left Egypt and returned to the land of CanaAn and to their father Jacob. 26 There they reported everything to him, saying, ‘Your son JoSeph is ALIVE, and he’s now the ruler of the entire land of Egypt!’

Well, this was so amazing to Jacob that he didn’t believe them. 27 But they told him everything that JoSeph said, no matter what it was that he said to them. Then he noticed the chariots that JoSeph had sent to pick him up, and that’s when the spirit of their father Jacob was restored. 28 And IsraEl said: ‘If my son JoSeph is still alive, that’s wonderful! I want to go see him before I die!’

Chapter 46

1 So IsraEl left with everything he had. And when he got to the Well of the Promise (BeerSheba), he offered a sacrifice to the God of his father IsaAc. 2 Then God spoke to IsraEl in a vision that night. He said: ‘Jacob! Jacob!’

And (Jacob) asked, ‘What is it?’

3 Then [God] said to him: ‘I am the God of your ancestors. Don’t be afraid to go down to Egypt, because I will make a great nation of you there. 4 I will also go down to Egypt with you, and I will bring you back… it will be JoSeph who will lay his hands over your eyes.’

5 Thereafter, Jacob left the Well of the Promise, and IsraEl’s sons carried their father, their baggage, and their women on the wagons that JoSeph sent to them. 6 They also brought along the goods and property that they had obtained in the land of CanaAn, and they went to the land of Egypt (Jacob and all his descendants – 7 his sons, his grandsons, his daughters, and his granddaughters)… he brought all of his seed down to Egypt.

8 These are the names of the grandsons of IsraEl that went to Egypt with their father Jacob: The sons of Jacob’s first-born, ReuBen, were 9 Enoch, PhalLus, Asron, and Charmi. 10 The sons of SimeOn were JemuEl, Jamin, Aod, Achin, SaAr, and Saul (the son of a CanaAnite woman). 11 The sons of Levi were Gedson, CaAth, and MeraRi. 12 The sons of Judah were Er, Aunan (who died in the land of CanaAn), Selom, Phares, Zara, and Er. 13 Phares’ sons were EsRon and JemuEl. The sons of IshSachar were: Thola, Phua, Asum, and SamBran. 14 The sons of ZebuLun were Sered, AlLon, and AchoEl.

15 These were the sons that LeAh gave birth to (for Jacob) in MesoPotamia of Syria, and those of his daughter Dina. Altogether, the sons and daughters numbered thirty-three.

16 The sons of Gad were Saphon, Angis, SanNis, ThasoBan, Aedis, AroEdis, and AreElis. 17 The sons of Asher were JemNa, JesShua, JeUl, BariJa, and their sister, SarAh. BariJa’s sons were Chobor, and MelchiEl.

18 These were the sons that ZelPha (whom Laban had given to his daughter LeAh) gave birth to for Jacob – sixteen people.

19 The sons of Jacob’s woman RachEl were JoSeph and BenJamin, 20 and the sons that were born to JoSeph in the land of Egypt through Asenath (the daughter of Petephre, the priest of HelioPolis) were ManasSeh, and Ephraim. The son that was born to ManasSeh by his Syrian concubine was MachIr. Then MachIr fathered GalaAd.

Ephraim’s sons were SutalaAm and TaAm. SutalaAm’s son was Edom.

21 The sons of BenJamin were Bala, Bochor, and Asbel. Bala’s sons were Gera, NoEman, Anchis, Ros, and Mamphim. Then Gera fathered Arad.

22 These were the sons that RachEl gave birth to for Jacob. All together, there were eighteen people.

23 The son of Dan was Hushim, 24 and NaphTali’s sons were AsiEl, Goni, IshSaar, and SolLem.

25 These were the sons that BalLa (whom Laban had given to his daughter RachEl) gave birth to for Jacob. [Altogether], there were seven people.

26 Therefore, all the descendants of Jacob that came with him to Egypt (those – except his son’s women – that came from his loins) totaled sixty-six. 27 And the sons of JoSeph who were born in the land of Egypt totaled nine. So all the people of the house of Jacob who were with JoSeph in Egypt totaled seventy-five.

28 Now, [Jacob] had sent Judah ahead of him to JoSeph, to [tell him to] meet him at the City of HroOn (Mit El-Harun?) in the land of RaMesse. 29 So JoSeph got his chariots ready and went to meet his father IsraEl at the City of HroOn. And when he got there, [JoSeph] fell on [Jacob’s] neck and cried profusely.

30 Then IsraEl said to JoSeph: ‘Now that I’ve seen your face, I can die happily, because you’re still alive!’

31 And JoSeph told his brothers: ‘I will go to Pharaoh and tell him this: My brothers and my father’s household have arrived from the land of CanaAn. 32 These men are shepherds and cattlemen, and they’ve brought along their cattle, herds, and all their property. 33 So if Pharaoh calls you and asks what you do for a living, 34 you must answer, Your servants have been shepherds since our youth… both our fathers and us. [You must say this] so you can live in the land of Gesem (Goshen) in Arabia, because those who shepherd flocks are considered disgusting by the Egyptians.’

Chapter 47

1 So JoSeph went and told Pharaoh: ‘My father and brothers have arrived from the land of CanaAn with their cattle, oxen, and all their possessions, and {Look!} they are now in the land of Gesem.’

2 Then he took five of his brothers and brought them before Pharaoh. 3 And when Pharaoh asked them, ‘What is your occupation?’ they replied, ‘Your servants (both our fathers and us) are shepherds.’

4 Then they said to Pharaoh: ‘We have come to stay in [your] land, because there is no pasture for your servant’s flocks, and there is a famine in the land of CanaAn. So please allow us to live in the land of Gesem.’

And Pharaoh told JoSeph: ‘Then let them live in the land of Gesem. And if you know any among them who are more capable, put them in charge of my cattle also.’

So, that’s how Jacob and his sons came to Egypt (to JoSeph). And when Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) heard about it, 5 he told JoSeph: ‘[Now that] your father and brothers have come to you, 6 {Look!} the whole land of Egypt is before you. Choose the best land as a place for your father and brothers to settle!’

7 Then later, JoSeph brought his father Jacob in and stood him before Pharaoh, and Jacob blest Pharaoh. 8 Then Pharaoh asked Jacob: ‘How old are you?’

9 And Jacob replied to Pharaoh: ‘The years of my life that I’ve lived are a hundred and thirty. But these years have been too few and too troubled. I haven’t reached the age that my ancestors [achieved], back in the days when they lived.’

10 And Jacob [again] blest Pharaoh, and left.

11 So, just as Pharaoh commanded, JoSeph gave his father and brothers a tract of land as their possession and settled them in the land of Egypt, on prime ground in the land of RaMesse. 12 Then JoSeph provided grain for his father, brothers, and his father’s entire household.

13 However, there was no grain [growing on] the land, so the famine was terrible. In the land of Egypt and in the land of CanaAn, people were weak from the famine. 14 As the result, JoSeph collected all the money that there was in the land of Egypt and in the land of CanaAn for the grain that the people were buying, and he took it all to the house of Pharaoh. 15 So before long, there was no more money left in the land of Egypt or in the land of CanaAn; as the result, all the Egyptians came to JoSeph and said: ‘Give us bread! Do you want us to die here before you? All our money is gone!’

16 And JoSeph replied to them: ‘If all your money is gone, then bring me your cattle, and I’ll give you bread in exchange for them.’

17 So they brought their cattle to JoSeph, and he gave them bread in exchange for their horses, sheep, oxen, and burros. And JoSeph kept the people alive with bread that year, in exchange for their cattle.

18 But after that year had passed, they came to him the second year and said: ‘Must we be consumed before you, our lord? For our money is gone, and since we’ve brought all our possessions and our cattle to you, our lord, we don’t have anything left other than our bodies and our land. 19 Therefore, so that we won’t die before you, and so that our land isn’t devastated, please buy us and our land for bread, so that we and our land will become Pharaoh’s servants. Give us seeds to grow so we can live and not die, and so that our land won’t be devastated!’

 20 As the result, JoSeph bought all the land of the Egyptians for Pharaoh… they sold it all to Pharaoh, because the famine was so bad. The entire land became Pharaoh’s, 21 and the people became his servants from one end of Egypt to the other… 22 that is, except for the land of the priests. JoSeph didn’t buy [their land], because Pharaoh gave [grain] as gifts to the priests. So they ate what Pharaoh gave them, and they didn’t have to sell their land.

23 Then JoSeph told all the Egyptians: ‘{Look!} Today I have purchased both you and your land for Pharaoh. So now, take the seeds and plant the land. 24 Then when it produces, you must give a fifth of its produce to Pharaoh. You may keep the rest for yourselves as seeds for planting and as food for you and for all who are in your homes.’

25 And they said: ‘You have saved us! We’ve found favor before you, our lord, and we will be Pharaoh’s servants!’

26 So JoSeph passed a law that we still have today: A fifth part [of the produce of the land of Egypt] is to be [given to] Pharaoh. The only exception is the land of the priests… that doesn’t belong to Pharaoh.

27 Well thereafter, IsraEl lived in the land of Gesem in Egypt and they owned an allotment [of land] there, so the [family] grew rapidly and profusely. 28 Jacob also lived for seventeen more years in the land of Egypt, until he reached the age of a hundred and forty-seven.

29 Then, as the time for IsraEl to die drew near, he called his son JoSeph and said to him: ‘If I’ve found favor before you, put your hand under my thigh and [swear] to me mercifully and truthfully that you won’t bury me in Egypt, 30 but that I will sleep with my ancestors. [Swear that] you will carry me out of Egypt and bury me in their tomb.’

And he said, ‘I will do what you’ve asked.’

31 But [Jacob] said: ‘Swear to me!’ And he swore to him. Then IsraEl bowed low, as he leaned on his cane.

Chapter 48

1 Well, sometime after that, this report came to JoSeph: ‘{Look!} Your father is ill!’ So he took his two sons, ManasSeh and Ephraim, and they went to [see] Jacob.

2 And when Jacob was told, ‘{Look!} Your son JoSeph has come to see you,’ IsraEl straightened himself and sat up on his bed. 3 And [he] said to JoSeph: ‘My God appeared to me in Luza in the land of CanaAn and blest me. 4 And He said to me, {Look!} I will make you grow and increase, and I will make many nations come from you. I will also give this land to you and to your seed that comes after you, as an inheritance through the ages.

5 ‘Now, your two sons, Ephraim and ManasSeh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came here, are my [sons] the same as ReuBen and SimeOn are my [sons]. 6 And any children that you have from this point on will share in the names of their brothers. Because, [the lands that they will] inherit will be named after them.

7 ‘And as for me; After I left Assyrian MesoPotamia, your mother RachEl died in the land of CanaAn during the evening, near the ChabRatha racetrack, as we were coming to EphRatha (or BethLehem). So I buried her beside the road at the racetrack of BethLehem.’

8 And when IsraEl noticed JoSeph’s sons, he asked: ‘Who are they?’

9 And JoSeph replied to his father: ‘They’re the sons that God has given to me here.’

And Jacob said: ‘Bring them here, so I can bless them.’

10 Now, IsraEl’s eyes were weak due to his age, so he couldn’t see. But he drew them close, and hugged and kissed them. 11 Then IsraEl said to JoSeph: ‘{Look!} I haven’t been deprived of seeing your face, and now {Look!} God has also shown me your seed.’

12 Then JoSeph brought them out from [between] his [father’s] knees, and they bowed to [IsraEl] with their faces to the ground.

13 Then JoSeph took his two sons, with Ephraim at his right hand (but on the left of IsraEl), and ManasSeh at his left hand (but on the right of IsraEl), and brought them near to him again. 14 However, IsraEl stuck out his right hand and laid it on Ephraim’s head (he was the younger), and he put his left hand on ManasSeh’s head, with his arms crossed. 15 Then he blest them, saying: ‘May the God who found my fathers AbraHam and IsaAc pleasing… the God who fed me from my youth until now 16 and the messenger who protects me from all that is evil, bless these boys; and may they be called by my name and the name of my fathers, AbraHam and IsaAc. Let them grow to be a vast number on the ground.’

17 Well when JoSeph noticed that his father had put his right hand on Ephraim’s head, that seemed wrong to him. So JoSeph took hold of his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to ManasSeh’s head. 18 And JoSeph said, ‘Father! This is the first-born; lay your right hand on his head!’

19 But he wouldn’t. He said, ‘I know, son, I know. [Your eldest son] will be a [tribe of] people, and he will be important. However, his younger brother will be greater, and his seed will become many nations.’

20 So he blest them that day, saying: ‘In your name, IsraEl will pronounce this blessing: May God make you like Ephraim and ManasSeh’… and he put Ephraim before ManasSeh.

21 Then IsraEl said to JoSeph: ‘Look, I’m dying! God will be with you and He will return you to the land of your fathers. 22 I leave you Shechem (a better portion than that of your brothers), which I took from the Amorites with my sword and bow.’

Chapter 49

1 Then Jacob called the rest of his sons in and said to them: 2 ‘Gather here so I can tell you what will happen to you in later years. Gather and listen to me, sons of Jacob. Listen to IsraEl… listen to your father!

3 ‘ReuBen; You’re my firstborn and my strength. You’re the first of my children, but you’re hard to endure, [pig headed], 4 and you’re as unruly as water; so bring an end to your violence! You even climbed up on your father’s bed and dirtied the couch that you climbed on.

5 ‘SimeOn and Levi; You are brothers who are good at the injustices that separated you. 6 May my soul pay no attention to the things that you say, and may my feelings never have any part in your conspiracies. For you’ve killed men in anger, and in your passion you’ve cut off the feet of bulls. 7 May your anger be cursed, because it is willful and cruel. So I will separate you in [the land of] Jacob and scatter you in IsraEl.

8 ‘Judah; Your brothers have spoken well you, so your hands will stay on the backs of your enemies, and your father’s sons will bow to you… 9 for Judah is the cub of a lion.

‘My son: you’ve grown from the tender plant [you once were], and now you’re a young lion. So by whom can you ever be beaten?

10 ‘There will always be a ruler from Judah,
And princes will come from his loins
Until the one we’re awaiting arrives…
The one who’s the hope of the nations.

11 ‘[He’ll] tie his foal to a vine…
The foal of his burro to a branch,
And he’ll wash his robes in [fine] wine…
In the blood of grapes, he will wash his clothes;
12 His eyes will be more more cheerful than wine;
And his teeth [will be] whiter than milk.

13 ‘ZebuLun will live on the coast near a shipping port that reaches to Sidon.

14 ‘IshSachar has desired the best thing… to rest among the [other] inheritances. 15 And [when he finds] the resting place good and the land fertile, he will put his shoulders to work and become a farmer.

16 ‘Dan will judge his people as a single tribe in IsraEl. 17 So let Dan be a snake on the road that blocks the path and bites at the hooves of horses, causing their riders to fall, 18 while he awaits Jehovah’s salvation.

19 ‘A group of plunderers will plunder Gad. However, he will also follow and plunder them.

20 ‘Asher will have plenty of bread, and he will provide delicious things to princes.

21 ‘NaphTali is a spreading vine [that will bear] beautiful fruit.

22 ‘JoSeph is a son that has grown…
My dearly-loved son has increased.
My younger son; you’ve come back to me…
23 The one whom the evil have spoken against…
The one who was plotted against
And whom archers [have tried to shoot down].
24 But their bows and arrows were quickly destroyed,
And the hand of Jacob’s Almighty God
Weakened the might of their arms.
For, he’s the one who brought the strength
Of the God of IsraEl, to his father.

25 ‘My God has helped you and blest you
With the blessings that come from above.
They’re the blessings of the ground that owns all…
They’re the blessings of the breasts and the womb.
26 They’re the blessings of your father and mother,
Which last longer than the blessings of the mountains,
And [longer than] the hills of the ages.

‘These [blessings] will be upon JoSeph’s head,
And on the heads of the brothers
Over whom he has taken the lead.

27 ‘BenJamin is a hungry wolf that will eat all morning long and also provide food in the evening.’

28 All these are the twelve sons of Jacob, and that’s what their father said to them. He blest them… he blest each of them by the blessings that they would receive. 29 Then he said to them: ‘Now I’m going to my people; so bury me with my ancestors in the cave that is in the field of EphRon the Chettite. 30 It’s the double cave across from MamRe in the land of CanaAn that AbraHam bought as a tomb from EphRon the Chettite, 31 and it’s where they buried AbraHam and his woman SarAh, IsaAc and his women RebecKa and LeAh, 32 in that part of the field where the caves of the sons of Chet are located.’

 33 Then Jacob stopped giving instructions to his sons, and he lifted his feet on the bed and died… and then he was buried with his people.

Chapter 50

1 Well at that, JoSeph fell over his father’s face, cried over him, and kissed him. 2 Then JoSeph told his servants (the embalmers) to [take charge of] his father’s body, and the embalmers mummified IsraEl. 3 The process took forty days, because that’s how long it takes to mummify someone. And all of Egypt mourned over him for seventy days.

4 Then when the days of mourning were completed, JoSeph spoke to the Pharaoh’s mighty ones and said: ‘If I’ve found favor in your eyes, talk to Pharaoh for me and tell him that 5 my father made me swear, saying, I want you to bury me in the tomb that I dug for myself in the land of CanaAn. So, I wish to go there and bury my father… and then I’ll return.’

6 And Pharaoh said to JoSeph: ‘Go up [north] and bury your father, just as he made you swear.’

7 So JoSeph went up [to the land of CanaAn] to bury his father; and all of Pharaoh’s servants and the elders of his house, as well as all the elders of the land of Egypt traveled with him… 8 along with the households of JoSeph and his brothers and the household of his father and his relatives. However, they left the sheep and oxen behind in the land of Gesem. 9 The entourage also included many chariots and horsemen, and a large crowd of others.

10 Then upon arriving at the threshing-floor of Atad (which is across the JorDan), they wailed for [Jacob] with a very deep grief, and they mourned there for his father for the next seven days.

11 Well, when the people of the land of CanaAn saw the mourning at the floor of Atad, they said: ‘This is a huge mourning to the Egyptians.’ So after that, they named the place The Mourning of Egypt Beyond the JorDan.

12 Yes, that’s what his sons did for him. 13 His sons carried him up into the land of CanaAn and buried him in the double cave that AbraHam bought as his own burying place from EphRon the Chettite, which is across from MamRe. 14 Then JoSeph and his brothers returned to Egypt, along with all those who had come with him to bury his father.

15 Well, after JoSeph’s brothers saw that their father had died, they said: ‘Let’s not forget that JoSeph can decide to get even with us and pay us back for all the evil things that we did to him at any time.’ 16 So they went to JoSeph and said: ‘Before his death, your father made us swear. He instructed us 17 to tell JoSeph to forgive us for the bad things we’ve done and for our sins, because we’ve really done some evil things to you. Therefore, please forgive the injustice of the servants of the God of your father.’

Well, JoSeph started to weep while they were talking to him. 18 Then they came up to him and said, ‘We are your servants!’

19 And JoSeph said: ‘Don’t be afraid, for I [belong to] God. 20 Although you once met and talked about doing evil things to me; God made what you said about me [turn out] for the good. And that’s why things happened as they have today… so that many people might be fed.’

21 Then he said to them: ‘Don’t be afraid; I’ll take care of you and your families.’ And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.

22 Well, JoSeph continued to live in Egypt along with his brothers and his father’s family for a hundred and ten years. 23 JoSeph [lived to] see Ephraim’s children through the third generation, and the sons of MachIr (ManasSeh’s son) were born at his side.

24 Then JoSeph told his [family]: ‘I’m dying. But God will surely come to you and take you from this land into the land that God swore to give to our ancestors, AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob. 25 Then JoSeph made the Sons of IsraEl swear, saying: ‘When God comes for you, you must carry my bones back with you.’

26 So JoSeph died at the age of a hundred and ten (c. 1879-BCE), and they prepared his body, then they placed it in a [tomb] in Egypt.

Exodus

From the Greek Septuagint text as was used by First Century Christians.
Written by Moses about 1549-BCE (according to our calculations)
after the construction of the Tent of Proofs in the desert.

Chapter 1

1 These are the names of the Sons of IsraEl that came to Egypt with their father Jacob and their families: 2 ReuBen, SimeOn, Levi, Judah, 3 IshSachar, ZebuLun, BenJamin, 4 Dan, NaphTali, Gad, and Asher. 5 Then [there was] JoSeph [who lived] in Egypt; so altogether, there were seventy-five of these people who [descended] from Jacob.

6 [In time], JoSeph, his brothers, and that entire generation died. 7 But the children of IsraEl grew and multiplied into a large and strong [nation], and the land helped them to grow.

8 Then a new king became the ruler over Egypt who didn’t know JoSeph (possibly SobeKemsaf I). 9 And he said to his nation: ‘{Look!} The children of IsraEl have [grown tremendously] and they’re now more powerful than we are. 10 So let’s be smooth in the way we deal with them, because if they continue to grow and then we find ourselves at war, they could side with our enemies. And after they beat us in war, they will leave our land!’

11 So he appointed [governors] over them, whose [job] was to make them do hard labor; and they built fortified cities for Pharaoh, including Pithom, RaMesse, and On (the City of the Sun). 12 But the more they held [the IsraElites] down, the faster they grew.

Well, they multiplied so much and grew so strong that the Egyptians hated the children of IsraEl. 13 So the Egyptians became tyrants over IsraEl 14 and made their lives unbearable by forcing them to work hard making bricks from clay and working in the fields… whatever needed to be done. And they were dealt with violently.

15 Then the king of Egypt told the midwives who [served] the Hebrews (one was SepPhora and the other was Poua): 16 ‘When you serve as midwives to the Hebrew women and they’re about to give birth, kill [the baby] if it’s a boy, but leave it alone if it’s a girl.’

17 However, the midwives feared God and wouldn’t do what the king of Egypt told them… they allowed the male [babies] to live. 18 So the king of Egypt called for the midwives and asked them: ‘Why haven’t you [killed] the male [babies]?’

19 And the midwives answered Pharaoh, saying: ‘Hebrew women aren’t like the women of Egypt, because they give birth before the midwives arrive, so they [already] have their children!’

20 As the result, God dealt kindly with the midwives, while the [IsraElites] continued to multiply and grow very strong. 21 And these midwives who feared God were able to start families.

22 Then Pharaoh told all his people: ‘Whenever a male is born to the Hebrews, you must throw it into the river… but let the females live.’

Chapter 2

1 Now, there was a certain man of the tribe of Levi who married one of the daughters of [his tribe]. 2 Then she got pregnant and gave birth to a male child. And when she saw how beautiful the child was, they hid him for three months. 3 But when they could no longer hide him, his mother got a box for him and coated it with tar, put the child inside, then she set it in the mud by the river 4 and she had his sister keep watch in the distance to see what would happen to him.

5 Well, Pharaoh’s daughter came down to the river to bathe. And as her handmaids were walking along by the river, they saw the box lying in the mud; so she sent a handmaid out to pick it up. 6 And when she opened it, she found the baby inside the box, crying. Well, Pharaoh’s daughter felt sorry for it and said, ‘This is a Hebrew child.’

7 Then [the baby’s] sister went up and asked Pharaoh’s daughter: ‘Would you like me to call a Hebrew [woman] to nurse the child for you?’

8 And Pharaoh’s daughter replied, ‘Go!’

So the young woman went and called [her] mother.

9 Then Pharaoh’s daughter said to [the mother]: ‘Take care of this child and nurse it for me, and I’ll pay you.’

So the woman took the child and nursed it. 10 And after the boy had grown, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. [Pharaoh’s daughter] named him Moses (Egyptian: Mo-sheh, or, to draw), because she said, ‘I drew him from the water.’

11 In time, after Moses had grown, he went to see his brothers, the sons of IsraEl. And as he was observing how bad things were, he noticed an Egyptian beating one of his Hebrew brothers of the children of IsraEl. 12 Then he looked around and he didn’t see anyone, so he bludgeoned the Egyptian and buried [his body] in the sand.

13 Well on the next day, he noticed two Hebrew men fighting, and he asked the bully, ‘Why are you beating your neighbor?’

14 And he replied: ‘Who appointed you to be our ruler and judge? Are you going to kill me like you killed that Egyptian yesterday?’

This stunned Moses, and he thought: ‘If [he knows], then others will know.’ 15 And when Pharaoh found out about it, he tried to have Moses put to death. So Moses withdrew from the face of Pharaoh and went to live in the land of Midian.

Then, upon arriving in the land of Midian, he sat down next to a well. 16 And nearby, the seven daughters of the Priest of Midian happened to be grazing their father’s sheep. Then when they came [to the well] to fill their buckets to water the flock, 17 some shepherds arrived and [tried to] chase them away. However, Moses stood up and protected them. And thereafter, he drew water for them and watered their sheep.

18 Well, after they returned to their home, their father (RagouEl) asked them, ‘Why have you returned so quickly today?’

19 And they replied: ‘An Egyptian protected us from the shepherds; and then he drew water for us and watered our sheep.’

20 So [RaguEl] asked his daughters: ‘Where is he… why did you leave the man? Invite him over [for a meal].’

21 Well [after that], Moses developed a good relationship with the man, and [RaguEl] gave his daughter SepPhoran to be Moses’ woman. 22 Then she got pregnant and gave birth to a son, whom Moses named Gersam (Visitor); for he said, ‘I’m a visitor in a strange land.’

23 After a while, the king of Egypt died. But the children of IsraEl kept groaning and crying because of their hard work. And the cries over their labor ascended to God. 24 [He] heard their groaning and God remembered the Sacred Agreement He had made with AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob. 25 So He [started paying attention] to the children of IsraEl, and He made Himself known to them.

Chapter 3

1 It was while Moses was out tending the flock of his father-in-law (His Excellence, the Priest of Midian) that he’d led the sheep into the desert to the dry mountain (Horeb). 2 And there, Jehovah’s messenger appeared to him in a flame that was burning in a bush. He saw the flames in the bush, but [the bush] wasn’t really burning. 3 And Moses said, ‘I’ll get closer, so I can see this great sight… to see why the bush isn’t being burned!’

4 And when [God] saw him drawing closer to look, the Lord called to him from the bush. He said: ‘Moses! Moses!’

And [Moses] asked: ‘What is it?’

5 And He said: ‘Don’t come any closer. Take your sandals off, because you’re standing on holy ground.’

6 Then He said: ‘I am the God of your ancestors… the God of AbraHam, the God of IsaAc, and the God of Jacob.’

Well at that, Moses turned his face away, because he was afraid to look at God.

7 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘I’ve seen the hardships that My people are enduring in Egypt, and I’ve heard their cries about their task-masters, so I know what they’re going through. 8 Now, I’ve come down here to free them from the Egyptians and to take them away from that land, to a land that is good and has plenty of room… a land that is flowing with milk and honey. It’s the place where the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Pherezites, Gergeshites, Evites, and Jebusites [live]. 9 For {Look!} the shouting of the children of IsraEl has now reached to Me, and I’ve seen the suffering that the Egyptians are bringing upon them. 10 So now, come; because I’m going to send you to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, and you’re going to bring My people (the children of IsraEl) out of the land of Egypt.’

11 But Moses asked God: ‘Just who am I that I should go to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and bring the children of IsraEl out that land?’

12 And God replied: ‘I will be with you! This [place] will serve as the sign that I am sending you. Then when you bring My people out of Egypt, you must serve God on this mountain.’

13 But Moses said to God: ‘Look, I’ll go to the children of IsraEl and tell them, The God of our ancestors has sent me to you. But they’re going to ask, What is His Name? So, what should I tell them?’

14 And God told Moses: ‘I am The Being!… just tell the children of IsraEl that The Being has sent you.’

15 Then God said to Moses: ‘Tell the Sons of IsraEl that Jehovah the God of your ancestors – the God of AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob – has sent you to them. That has been My Name through the ages, and it’s how I should be remembered from generation to generation.

16 ‘So, go and gather the elders of the children of IsraEl, then tell them that Jehovah, the God of your ancestors, has appeared to you. He’s the God of AbraHam, the God of IsaAc, and the God of Jacob. [And tell them that] He said: I have looked [down] and [seen] all the bad things that are happening to you in Egypt. 17 And tell them that I will take them away from their oppression in Egypt into the land of the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Pherezites, Gergeshites, Evites, and Jebusites… a land that is flowing with milk and honey. 18 And then they will listen to what you have to say.

‘After that, you and the elders of IsraEl must go to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and tell him this: The God of the Hebrews has called us, so we’re going on a three-day journey into the desert to offer a sacrifice to our God. 19 However, I know that Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) won’t let you go [unless he sees] a mighty hand [of power]. 20 So I will raise My hand and strike the Egyptians with all the wonders that I [wish to show] to them… and then he will allow you to leave.

21 ‘I will also make [My] people look good in the eyes of the Egyptians, so that when you escape, you won’t leave empty handed. 22 Women will ask their neighbors and landlords for clothing, and for gold and silver [jewelry], which you will then put on your sons and your daughters… so you will plunder the Egyptians.’

Chapter 4

1 Then Moses asked: ‘But what if they don’t listen to me and do what I tell them to do? Or, what if they say, God hasn’t appeared to you… what should I tell them then?’

2 So the Lord asked him: ‘What do you have in your hand?’

And he replied: ‘My walking stick.’

3 Then [the Lord] said: ‘Throw it on the ground.’

Well, when he threw it on the ground it became a snake, and Moses ran from it.

4 And after that, the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, reach out and grab it by the tail.’

So [Moses] reached out and grabbed it by the tail, 5 and it became a walking stick in his hand once again. [And God continued]: ‘That’s why they will believe you when you say that the God of your ancestors has appeared to you… the God of AbraHam, and of IsaAc, and of Jacob.’

6 Then the Lord told him: ‘Now, put your hand inside [your robe and touch] your chest.’ So he reached inside and touched his chest; and when he brought his hand out, it was [as white] as snow. 7 Then [the Lord] said: ‘Now, put your hand back in and touch your chest once more.’ So he reached in and touched his chest, and when he brought it out, its color had returned to the regular shade of his flesh.

8 [Then the Lord said]: ‘So, if the first sign doesn’t make them listen to you and believe, the second sign will. 9 But if they still won’t listen to you or believe after these two signs, then draw some water from the river and pour it out on the dry ground… and the river water will turn into blood.’

10 Then Moses said to the Lord: ‘I beg you Lord; I’ve not been good at this in the past, and I’ve not become any better at it since You’ve started talking to your servant… I’m a poor speaker and I talk slowly!’

11 And the Lord asked Moses: ‘Who gave man his mouth? Who made both those who can hear and the deaf, as well as those who can see and the blind? Wasn’t it Me… God? 12 Now, go on, and I will open your mouth and tell you what to say!’

13 But Moses continued: ‘I beg you Lord, send someone who is more capable!’

14 Well, this made the Lord very angry with Moses, so He said: ‘Look; isn’t Aaron the Levite your brother? I know that he’ll speak for you… look, he’s coming to meet you, and when he sees you, he’ll be jumping for joy. 15 Then you must talk to him and put My words into his mouth, and I’ll open both of your mouths and tell you what to say. 16 Let him speak to the people for you… he’ll serve as your mouth and you will be the things of God to him. 17 So now, take this walking stick that turned into a snake in your hands and work miracles with it!’

18 Well thereafter, Moses returned to His Excellence (his father-in-law), and said: ‘I’m going to visit my brother in Egypt to see if he’s still living.’

And His Excellence said to Moses: ‘Go in health.’

Well, after some time, the king of Egypt (possibly Kamose) died. 19 And the Lord said to Moses (while he was still in Midian): ‘Now go… leave for Egypt, because those who wanted to kill you are dead.’

20 So Moses took his wife and children, mounted them on his animals, and returned to Egypt. Moses also carried along his walking stick [through which he had received power] from God.

21 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘When you return to Egypt, consider at all the miracles that I’ve given to you, then you must perform these things before Pharaoh. However, I will make him hard-hearted and he will still refuse to send the people away. 22 so you must tell Pharaoh, This is what Jehovah has said: IsraEl is My firstborn, 23 and I’ve told you to send My people away so they can serve Me; therefore, if you won’t send them away, {Look!} I will destroy all your firstborn!’

24 Well, [during their journey], a messenger of Jehovah met them along the way at an inn, and he wanted to kill [Moses’ son]. 25 But SepPhoran grabbed a [sharp] stone and cut off her son’s foreskin. Then she fell at his feet and said: ‘See… the blood of my son’s circumcision is flowing!’ 26 So because she said, ‘The blood of my son’s circumcision is flowing,’ he left.

27 Then the Lord told Aaron: ‘Now, go into the desert to meet Moses.’ So he went and met him at the Mountain of God, and they kissed each other. 28 And thereafter, Moses told Aaron everything that the Lord had said, why he was being sent, and of all the things that he’d been instructed to do.

29 So Moses and Aaron went and gathered the elders of the children of IsraEl, 30 and Aaron told them everything that God had said to Moses; then he performed the miracles before the people… 31 and the people believed and were happy, because God was visiting the children of IsraEl and He had seen how they were being oppressed. So the people all bowed to their faces before him.

Chapter 5

1 Well after that, Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, ‘This is what Jehovah the God of IsraEl, said: Send My people away, so they can hold a feast to Me in the desert.’

2 And Pharaoh asked: ‘Just who is this Jehovah, that I must pay attention to anything He has to say and send the children of IsraEl away? I don’t know Jehovah, and I’m not letting IsraEl go!’

3 So [Moses and Aaron] said: ‘The God of the Hebrews has called us to Him, and we’re going on a three-day journey into the desert to [offer] sacrifices to our God Jehovah; otherwise, we’re afraid that He might strike us and we’ll die!’

4 But the king of Egypt replied: ‘Why are you, Moses and Aaron, trying to keep people from doing their work? Now, go back and just do your jobs!’

5 Then Pharaoh said [to his people]: ‘{Look!} There are huge numbers of them and we can’t allow them to slack off from doing their work!’ 6 And as the result, Pharaoh gave orders to those who were in charge to tell their supervisors 7 not to give the people any straw for brick-making as they did the day before and three days before that. He said, ‘Let them gather and carry the straw for themselves! 8 However, they must maintain the quota for the daily brick making… don’t let up on them, because they’re lazy! Why, they came here demanding that we must allow them to [go out and] offer a sacrifice to their God. 9 Therefore, make the men’s work much harder, so they’ll pay attention to that instead of to idle chatter!’

10 Well, the taskmasters and the supervisors acted quickly, and they told the people, ‘This is what Pharaoh says: I’m not going to give you straw anymore. 11 Go get it yourselves! Take it from wherever you can find it… but you must still make the same number of [bricks]!’

12 So the people were scattered all over the land of Egypt as they gathered stubble for straw. 13 And the taskmasters kept pushing them, saying, ‘You aren’t meeting the quotas you had when [we were providing] the straw.’ 14 And then the supervisors who were assigned over the children of IsraEl by Pharaoh’s governors were whipped… and they were asked: ‘Why aren’t you meeting your brick-making quotas as you did yesterday and three days ago?’

15 Well as the result, the children of IsraEl’s supervisors went to see Pharaoh, and asked him: ‘Why are you treating your servants this way? 16 You don’t give us any straw, but you tell us to make bricks anyhow. And now {Look!} your servants have been whipped! Are you going to allow your people to be injured?’

17 And he said to them: ‘You’re lazy and you’re slackers! For you said, Let us go and offer sacrifices to our God. 18 Now, go to work instead, because you won’t be given any straw… but you must meet the same quota of bricks.’

19 Well, the children of IsraEl’s supervisors realized that they were in a tight situation, since they’d been told that they still had to deliver the same daily quota of bricks. 20 So when they saw Moses and Aaron coming to meet them (just after they’d left Pharaoh), 21 they said: ‘May God look down on you and judge you, because you’ve made us so hated by Pharaoh and his servants that you’ve put the sword into their hands to kill us!’

22 Then Moses turned to Jehovah, and said: ‘I beg You, O Lord; Why have You caused trouble for these people, and why did You send me? 23 For from the time that I went to Pharaoh to speak in Your Name, he’s made things harder for these people… and You still haven’t taken Your people away.’

Chapter 6

1 And Jehovah replied to Moses: ‘Now you’re going to see what I will do to Pharaoh; for he will indeed send them away… with a strong hand and a hard pitch he’ll THROW them out of his land!’

2 And God said to Moses: ‘I am Jehovah. 3 I’m the One who appeared to AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob, and I was their God. However, I didn’t show them My Name Jehovah 4 when I established My sacred agreement with them [and promised] to give them the land of the CanaAnites… the land where they were visitors and living as strangers.

5 ‘Now, I’ve heard the groaning of the children of IsraEl over the oppressive ways that the Egyptians are keeping them in slavery, and I’ve remembered the sacred agreement [that I made] with them. 6 So, go and tell the children of IsraEl that I am Jehovah and that I will lead them out of the tyranny of the Egyptians and free them from slavery. I will pay their ransom with a hard pitch and a great judgment, 7 then I’ll take them to be My people and I’ll be their God… and they’ll know that I am Jehovah their God who freed them from the tyranny of the Egyptians. 8 Then I’ll bring them into the land that I reached out to give to AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob… I’ll give it to them as their inheritance, for I am Jehovah!’

9 So, that’s what Moses then went and told the Sons of IsraEl. However, they wouldn’t listen to Moses, because of their fear and their hard work. 10 So the Lord told Moses: 11 ‘Go and tell Pharaoh the king of Egypt to send the children of IsraEl out of his land!’

12 And Moses replied to the Lord, saying: ‘Look, the children of IsraEl didn’t listen to me, so how will I get Pharaoh to listen to me? Besides, I’m not a good speaker.’

13 So the Lord spoke to [both] Moses and Aaron and told them to order Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) to send the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

14 Now, these were the family heads of each of the houses of [IsraEl at the time]: The sons of ReuBen (IsraEl’s firstborn) were Enoch, PhalLus, AsRon, and Charmi. They were ReuBen’s children.

15 The sons of SimeOn were JemuEl, JaMin, Aod, Jachin, SaAr, and Saul (the son of a Phoenician woman). These were SimeOn’s children.

16 The sons of Levi (and the family heads) were Gedson, CaAth, and MeraRi. And Levi lived to be a hundred and thirty-seven years old.

17 The sons of Gedson (and the family heads) were LoBeni and Semei.

CaAth’s sons were 18 AmBram, IshSaAr, ChebRon, and Ozie. And CaAth lived to be a hundred and thirty-three years old.

19 The sons of MeraRi (and the family heads) were MoOli, and Omusi.

20 Now, AmBram married his cousin JochaBed (the daughter of his father’s brother), and she gave birth to Aaron, Moses, and MiriAm (their sister). AmBram [died] when he was a hundred and thirty-two years old.

21 The sons of IshSaAr were KorAh, Naphec, and Zechri. 22 And the sons of OziEl were MisaEl, EliShaphan, and Segri.

23 Then Aaron married EliShaBeth, the daughter of AminAdab and the sister of NaAsson, and she gave birth to Nadab, AbiUd, EliEzer, and IthaMar.

24 KorAh’s sons were Asir, ElKana, and AbiAsar. These were KorAh’s children.

25 Aaron’s son EliEzer married one of the daughters of PhutiEl, and she gave birth to Phineas. These are the heads of the family of the Levites, by their generations.

26 And this is Aaron and Moses, who were told by God to use His power to bring the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

27 So, this is what they went and said to Pharaoh the king of Egypt (before Aaron and Moses brought the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt) 28 on the very day that the Lord spoke to Moses. 29 For the Lord told Moses: ‘I am Jehovah! So, speak to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and tell him whatever I say to you.’

30 But Moses replied to the Lord: ‘Look, I’m not a good speaker; so how will I get Pharaoh to listen to me?’

Chapter 7

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Look! I’ve made you a god to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron is your Prophet. 2 So, tell Pharaoh everything that I’ve told you to say through your brother Aaron… tell him that he must send the children of IsraEl out of his land! 3 However, I will make Pharaoh hardhearted, then I will bring many signs and wonders to the land of Egypt; 4 but Pharaoh will still refuse to listen to you. Then I will lay My hand upon Egypt and bring My people the children of IsraEl out of their land by My power and with a great vengeance. 5 And all the Egyptians will know that I am Jehovah, and that I stretched out My hand toward Egypt and brought the children of IsraEl out of their midst.’

6 So Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded them.

7 Now, Moses was eighty years old, and his brother Aaron was eighty-three years old when they spoke to Pharaoh.

8 Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron: 9 ‘If Pharaoh says that you must give him a sign or perform a miracle; tell your brother Aaron to throw his walking stick on the ground in front of Pharaoh and his servants, and it will become a snake.’

10 So when Moses and Aaron went in [and stood] before Pharaoh and his servants, they did just as the Lord had instructed them. Aaron threw his walking stick before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a snake. 11 However, Pharaoh brought in all the Egyptian wise men, warlocks, and soothsayers, and they used their magic to do the same thing… 12 they each threw down their walking sticks and they became snakes. But then, Aaron’s walking stick swallowed down their walking sticks.

13 Nevertheless, Pharaoh’s heart became hard and he refused to listen to what Jehovah had instructed them to say. 14 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, Pharaoh’s heart has become hard and he won’t let the people go. 15 So, approach Pharaoh when he goes down to the river tomorrow morning and meet with him there on its bank. Then take [Aaron’s] walking stick that turned into a snake, 16 and tell [Pharaoh] that Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has sent you to him, and that He says, Send My people away so they can serve Me in the desert! Look, you haven’t listened to Me so far, 17 but this is how I’m going to let you know that I am the Lord!

‘[Then tell him]: Look; I’m going to slap the water with this walking stick in my hand, and the river water will change into blood. 18 Then all the fish in the river will die and it will stink, and the Egyptians won’t be able to drink water from the river.’

19 And the Lord continued: ‘Then tell your brother Aaron to take his walking stick and hold his arms out over all the water in Egypt (over its rivers, canals, ponds, and any standing water) and they will turn into blood. This blood will be throughout the entire land of Egypt… even in their pottery and wooden jars!’

20 So Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded them. [Aaron] held out the walking stick and slapped the river right there in front of Pharaoh and his servants, and all the river water changed into blood. 21 Then all the fish in the river died and the river had a foul odor, so the Egyptians couldn’t drink water from it. And there was blood throughout the entire land of Egypt.

22 However, the Egyptian soothsayers used their magic to do the same thing. So the heart of Pharaoh became hard and he wouldn’t listen to them… which is just what the Lord said [would happen]. 23 Then Pharaoh turned around and went back into his palace without looking at anything.

24 Well, the Egyptians had to dig [pits] around the river to find drinking water, because they couldn’t drink the water from the river. 25 And Jehovah’s conquest of the river lasted for seven days.

Chapter 8

1 Then the Lord told Moses, ‘Now go to Pharaoh [again] and tell him that this is what Jehovah has said: Send My people away, so they can serve Me. 2 And if you don’t send them away, {Look!} I will fill your land with frogs… 3 the river will teem with frogs, and they’ll get into your houses, into your bedrooms, and onto your beds. [They will be] in the homes of your citizens, in the homes of your servants, on your dough, and on your ovens. 4 They will also climb on you, your servants, and your people.

5 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Now, tell your brother Aaron to raise his arms with his walking stick in his hand over the rivers, canals, and pools, to bring up the frogs.’

6 So Aaron held his arms out over the waters of Egypt and brought up the frogs; and the frogs that he brought up covered the whole land of Egypt.

7 Well, the Egyptian soothsayers used their magic and they too brought frogs upon the land of Egypt.

8 But then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘Pray to Jehovah for me and ask Him to take the frogs away from my people and from me. Then I will send [the children of IsraEl] away to offer their sacrifices to Jehovah.’

9 And Moses said to Pharaoh: ‘Tell me exactly when I should pray for the frogs to disappear from you, your servants, and your people, [for that’s when they will leave] you, your people, and your houses. However, they will remain in the river.’

10 And [Pharaoh] replied: ‘Tomorrow morning.’

Then [Moses] said: ‘It will be just as you’ve said… and then you will know that there is no [God] other than Jehovah. 11 For the frogs will be removed from you, your houses, your villages, your servants, and your people. However, they will remain in the river.’ 12 And at that, Moses and Aaron left Pharaoh.

Then Moses called to Jehovah and asked Him to remove the frogs, as Pharaoh had requested. 13 And Jehovah did what Moses asked… the frogs died in the houses, villages, and fields. 14 Then they gathered them in piles, which caused the whole land to stink.

15 Well, when Pharaoh saw that there was some relief, his heart became hard again, and he didn’t listen to the things that they told him that Jehovah had said. 16 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, tell Aaron to take his walking stick in his hand and to hit the dirt on the ground; then fleas will cover the men and animals throughout the entire land of Egypt.’

17 So Aaron stuck out his walking stick and hit the dirt on the ground, and fleas covered the men and the animals… there were fleas on the ground everywhere!

18 Well, the soothsayers tried to use their magic to do the same thing and bring out the fleas, but they were unable to do so. However, the fleas covered both the men and the animals. 19 So the soothsayers said to Pharaoh: ‘This is the finger of God!’

But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and he wouldn’t listen to them and do as Jehovah had said. 20 So the Lord said to Moses, ‘Get up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh as he’s going down to the water. Then you must tell him that this is what Jehovah has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me in the desert. 21 For if you won’t let My people go, {Look!} I’m going to send stable flies to you, your servants, your citizens, and into your homes. The houses of the Egyptians will be filled with stable flies wherever they live in the land. 22 [But this time], I will create a marvelous difference in the land of Gesem, where My people are living… there’ll be no stable flies there. Then you will know that I am Jehovah, the God of the whole earth, 23 when I create a difference between My people and yours! This is going to happen in your land tomorrow!

24 Well, the stable flies came in huge numbers and they got into the houses of Pharaoh, his servants, and everyone in the land of Egypt… the land was virtually destroyed by stable flies! 25 So Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron [again] and said: ‘Now, go and offer a sacrifice to Jehovah your God… [but do it] here in this land.’

26 However, Moses said: ‘We can’t do that, because the things we will sacrifice to Jehovah our God are considered disgusting by the Egyptians. So if we sacrifice such things in front of the Egyptians, they will stone us. 27 Rather, let us travel three days into the desert, and we will offer our sacrifices to Jehovah our God there, just as our Lord told us.’

28 Then Pharaoh said: ‘Well, you can go and sacrifice to your God in the desert; but don’t go too far… and pray to Jehovah for me!’

29 And Moses said: ‘Now I will leave you and pray to God, so that the stable flies will leave your servants and your citizens tomorrow. But Pharaoh… don’t deceive me again and then refuse to send the people away to sacrifice to Jehovah.’

30 So Moses left Pharaoh and he prayed to God; 31 and Jehovah did just as Moses said… He removed all the stable flies from Pharaoh, his servants, and his citizens. 32 However, Pharaoh’s heart became hard once again and he wouldn’t send the people away.

Chapter 9

1 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Go to Pharaoh and tell him that this is what Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me! 2 If you don’t send My people away and if you prevent them from going, 3 {Look!} the Lord will touch the cattle in your fields – the horses, burros, camels, bulls, and sheep – and many will die! 4 I will also show a marvelous difference between [the way I will treat] the cattle of the Egyptians and the cattle of the children of IsraEl. None of those that belong to the children of IsraEl will die.’

5 Then God told him when this would happen. He said, ‘I will bring it on the land tomorrow.’

6 And the next day, cattle that belonged to all the Egyptians died, but none of the children of IsraEl’s cattle died. 7 And when Pharaoh saw that none of the cattle that belonged to the children of IsraEl died (not one), his heart became even harder; so he refused to let the people go.

8 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying: ‘Moses should take handfuls of furnace ashes and throw them into the sky before Pharaoh and his servants, 9 so it can blow like dust over the entire land of Egypt. Then the men and animals throughout all of Egypt will break out with blisters.’

10 So Moses carried furnace ashes before Pharaoh and threw them into the sky… and they caused blisters to break out on both the men and their animals.

11 Well, the soothsayers were no longer able to stand before Moses, because they were also covered with blisters like everyone else in the land of Egypt. 12 But Jehovah made Pharaoh’s heart even harder, so he wouldn’t listen to them and do what the Lord told him to do.

13 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Get up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh, then tell him that this is what Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me. 14 For I’ve been sending all My plagues into your heart and into the hearts of your servants and your people, so you will know that there isn’t anyone else like Me in the entire earth. 15 And now I’m going to raise My hand to strike you and kill your people, wiping them off of the earth. 16 For the very reason that you’ve been allowed to live is so that I might display My strength through you, and so that My Name might be advertised throughout the whole world!

17 ‘You’ve taken great pains to keep My people and to not let them go… haven’t you? 18 So look! At this same time tomorrow I will cause a hailstorm that will be the worst that Egypt has seen since the time it was founded. 19 Hurry and gather your cattle, as well as everything else that you have in the fields… all the men and cattle that you can find in the fields. For if they don’t go inside a building, the hail will hit them and kill them!

20 So those servants of Pharaoh who were afraid of what the Lord said brought their cattle into their homes. 21 And those who didn’t pay any attention to what the Lord said left their cattle in the fields.

22 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Raise your hands to the sky, and there will be a hailstorm throughout the entire land of Egypt… on the men, the cattle, and all the plants that are growing on the ground.’

23 So Moses raised his hands to the sky, and Jehovah sent hail, thunder, and lightning that rolled around on the ground. And this hail from Jehovah rained throughout the entire land of Egypt. 24 There was hail and there was lightning mixed with hail… it was the greatest hailstorm to hit Egypt in the [history of] that nation! 25 The hail landed all over the land of Egypt – on the men, the animals, and the grass in the fields – and it broke all the trees in the fields. 26 But in the land of Gesem where the children of IsraEl were, there was no hail.

27 So Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘I’ve sinned this time. Jehovah is righteous, and my people and I are wicked. 28 Pray to Jehovah for me and have Him stop the thunder, lightning, and the hail; then I will send you away and you won’t have to [live here] anymore.’

29 And Moses said to him: ‘After I leave the city, I will raise my hands to Jehovah, and the thunder, lightning, hail, and rain will stop… then you will know that the earth belongs to Jehovah. 30 However, I know that you and your servants still don’t fear Jehovah.’

31 Well, [Egypt’s] flax and barley was all destroyed, because the barley was fully-grown and the flax had seeds. 32 However, the wheat and rye hadn’t been damaged, because they came up later.

33 Then Moses left Pharaoh and [walked] out of the city. And when he raised his hands to Jehovah, the thundering ended, and the rain and hail stopped falling.

34 But when Pharaoh saw that the rain, hail, and thundering had stopped, he continued to sin. He hardened his heart and the hearts of his servants. 35 And it was because of this hardened heart that Pharaoh refused to send the children of IsraEl away, as Jehovah had instructed him through Moses.

Chapter 10

1 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and said: ‘Go to Pharaoh [again], because I’ve hardened the hearts of him and his servants so I could bring these signs upon them. 2 [I did this] so you could tell your children and your children’s children of the many ways I’ve mocked the Egyptians through the wonders I’ve brought upon them, so that they would know that I am the Lord.’

3 Then Moses and Aaron went before Pharaoh and said to him: ‘This is what Jehovah, the God of the Hebrews, says: How much longer will you refuse to respect Me? Send My people away, so they can serve Me! 4 But if you won’t send My people away; {Look!} at this same time tomorrow, I will bring huge amounts of locusts to all your borders. 5 They will cover the entire land, so that you won’t be able to see the ground. They will eat everything that the hail has left for you, and chew up every tree that you still have growing in the land. 6 Your houses, the houses of your servants, and all the houses throughout the land of Egypt will be filled with them. It will be something that neither your fathers nor their ancestors have seen from their time until this day.’

Then Moses turned and left Pharaoh. 7 And Pharaoh’s servants said to him: ‘How much longer are you going to allow them to be a snare to us? Send those people away so they can serve their God! Don’t you realize that Egypt is [being] destroyed?’

8 So they went and brought Moses and Aaron back to Pharaoh, and he said to them: ‘You may go and serve Jehovah your God… but, who will be going with you?’

9 And Moses replied: ‘We will be taking the young and the old, along with our sons, daughters, sheep, and bulls, because this is a feast of Jehovah.’

10 Then [Pharaoh] said to them: ‘May Jehovah be with you. But if I send you away, must I also [send away] all that you own? You have an evil [plan], 11 so [I’m] not going to [allow that]! I’ll just allow the men to go and serve your God, because that’s all you really wanted. Now, throw them out from before the presence of Pharaoh!’

12 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Raise your hands over the land of Egypt and let the locusts come to the land. They will eat every plant on the ground and all the fruit that wasn’t damaged by the hail on the trees!’

13 So Moses raised his walking stick to the sky, and Jehovah sent a south wind [that blew] all day and all night long. Then the next morning, the south wind brought the locusts, 14 sending them throughout the land of Egypt. And there they sat in huge numbers throughout all the borders of Egypt. Never had such locusts been seen before or since! 15 They covered the entire ground and they devastated the land. They ate all the plants off the ground and any fruit in the trees that hadn’t been damaged by the hail… nothing green was left on the trees or in the fields anywhere in the land of Egypt.

16 Then Pharaoh hastily called Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘I have sinned before Jehovah your God and against you. 17 [Please] pardon my sin one more time and pray to Jehovah your God… ask Him to take away this death!’

18 So Moses left Pharaoh and prayed to God; 19 then Jehovah sent a strong wind from the sea that blew in the opposite direction, picking up the locusts and throwing them into the Red Sea… and there wasn’t a single locust left anywhere in the land of Egypt. 20 But Jehovah continued to harden Pharaoh’s heart, so he didn’t send the children of IsraEl away.

21 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Now lift your hands toward the sky and bring darkness to the land of Egypt… a darkness that can be felt.’

22 So Moses raised his hands to the sky, and it stormed throughout the land of Egypt for three days… and the sky became totally black. 23 Well, for the next three days, nobody could see anyone else, so no one even got out of bed. However, all the children of IsraEl had light where they were.

24 Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘Now, go and serve your God Jehovah… but you must leave your sheep, your cattle, and your belongings here!’

25 However, Moses said: ‘No! You must allow us the burnt offerings and sacrifices that we’re going to offer to our God Jehovah… 26 our cattle will be going with us! We won’t leave a hoof behind, because we’re going to take them to serve Jehovah our God, and we won’t know how we’re supposed to serve Him until we get there.’

27 But Jehovah kept hardening Pharaoh’s heart and he wouldn’t let them go. 28 So Pharaoh said: ‘Get away from me, and be careful not to see my face again, because the next time you appear before me, you’re going to die!’

29 And Moses replied: ‘That’s what you’ve said, so I won’t appear in your presence again!’

Chapter 11

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘I’m going to bring one more plague upon Pharaoh and Egypt… and then he will send you away with everything. In fact, he’ll drive you out! 2 Now, go to the people secretly and tell them to ask their neighbors for clothing, silver, and gold jewelry.’

3 Well, Jehovah caused his people to be looked upon favorably by the Egyptians and they were willing to lend things to them, because the Egyptians considered Moses a great man… even greater than Pharaoh and his servants.

4 Then Moses told [the children of IsraEl], ‘This is what the Lord said: About midnight I will be going throughout Egypt, 5 and all the firstborn in the land will die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on the throne, to the firstborn of the female slave who sits by the mill, as well as the firstborn of all the cattle. 6 Then a cry will [be heard] throughout the land of Egypt such as has never been heard before and will never be heard again. 7 However, among the children of IsraEl, not even a dog will snarl at a man or an animal. That’s when you’ll see the great difference that Jehovah will make between the Egyptians and IsraEl. 8 For they will then be your servants… they’ll come to [you] and bow, saying, Leave, both you and all the people that you’re in charge of. And that’s when [you’ll] leave.’

9 Now, Moses had left Pharaoh [feeling very] angry. And the Lord told Moses: ‘Pharaoh isn’t going to listen to you anymore, so I’ll now show great signs and wonders in the land of Egypt.’

10 Yes, Moses and Aaron had brought about all these signs and wonders to the land of Egypt and to Pharaoh. But Jehovah kept hardening Pharaoh’s heart, and he wouldn’t listen and send the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

Chapter 12

1 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron there in the land of Egypt, and said: 2 ‘This will be your first month. It is to be the first one [in your] year. 3 So tell the whole gathering of the children of IsraEl that on the tenth day of this month, each man should select a lamb for his household (depending on the size of his family). 4 And if there are just a few in his house (too few [to eat a whole] lamb), they may go to [the home of] a nearby neighbor. They are to figure out how many people there will be, and then calculate how much lamb they will eat.

5 ‘So, choose a perfect male yearling lamb from [your herd] of lambs and kids, 6 and keep it nearby until the fourteenth day of this month. Then the whole gathering of the children of IsraEl must slaughter [their lambs] toward the evening, 7 and they must gather the blood and put it on the top and both sides of the doorframes of the houses where they will be eating [the lamb]. 8 Then that night, they must roast the flesh over a fire and eat it with fermentation-free bread and bitter herbs.

9 ‘Now, you must not eat it raw or boiled in water, just roasted over a fire with the head, feet, and extremities. 10 Nothing should be left over until morning, and you shouldn’t break any of its bones. Then any leftovers must be burned in the fire.

11 ‘And this is how you must eat it: With your thighs covered for work, your sandals on your feet, and your walking sticks in your hands. You must eat it quickly, because it is Jehovah’s Passover. 12 For I will go throughout the land of Egypt that night and strike all the firstborn in that land (both the men and their animals), and I will bring My vengeance upon all the gods of Egypt… for I am Jehovah!

13 ‘Now, this blood will be the sign that you are inside of each house; for when I see the blood, I will protect you, and you won’t be a part of the plague of destruction when I strike the land of Egypt.

14 ‘You must always remember this day and keep it as a feast to Jehovah through all your generations… [observance of] this feast will be the law through the ages.

15 ‘You must eat fermentation-free bread for seven days. And starting on the first day, you must remove all the fermentation from your homes. For if anyone eats fermentation between the first and seventh days, that person must be destroyed in IsraEl.

16 ‘The first day will be called holy, and the seventh day will be your holy day, when you aren’t to do any hired work. The only work that you may do will be for the things that you require.

17 ‘You must observe this commandment, because this is the day that I will use My great power to bring you out of the land of Egypt… you must make this day a law through the ages for every generation! 18 You must eat fermentation-free bread from the evening of the fourteenth-day of the first month until the evening of the twenty-first day. 19 Fermentation must not be found in your homes during those seven days, and whoever eats anything with fermentation must have his life cut off from the gathering of IsraEl and he will be self-condemned in the land. This applies to the native residents of your land and your neighbors (converts). 20 Nobody should eat anything that has fermentation… only fermentation-free bread may be eaten in any of your homes.’

21 Then Moses called all the elders of the children of IsraEl and told them: ‘Go find yourselves a lamb (according to your family needs) and slaughter the Passover. 22 Then [cut] bunches of hyssop branches and dip them into some of the blood next to the door, and touch it to the upper part and both sides of the door frame… with this blood that is by the door. Then no one should go outside the door of his house until morning, 23 for the Lord will pass over you [as He] strikes the Egyptians… He will see the blood on the doorframes and the Lord will pass over that door. He won’t allow the destroyer to enter your homes to strike you.

24 ‘Now, keep this as a Law for yourselves and for your descendants through the ages. 25 And when you enter the land that Jehovah has promised to give you, you must keep on doing this. 26 Then if your sons should ever ask, Why are we doing this? 27 You should tell them: The Passover is a sacrifice to Jehovah for when He protected the homes of the children of IsraEl in Egypt and He struck the Egyptians, but [passed over] our homes.’

28 Thereafter, the people bowed to their faces, then the children of IsraEl went and did exactly as Jehovah had instructed Moses and Aaron.

29 Well, it was midnight when Jehovah struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt… from the firstborn of Pharaoh who was sitting on the throne, to the firstborn of the female slave who was sitting in a dungeon, and to the firstborn of all the cattle. 30 So Pharaoh woke up that night (as did his servants and all the Egyptians) and there was a lot of screaming throughout the entire land of Egypt; for someone had died in every home.

31 As the result, Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron that night and told them this: ‘Get up and leave us, both you and the children of IsraEl! Go and serve your God Jehovah as you’ve asked, 32 and take your sheep and bulls with you. But please bless me… I beg you!’

33 All the Egyptian people also urged them to leave their land quickly, because they were saying, ‘We’re all going to die!’

34 So the children of IsraEl took all their bread dough that hadn’t fermented yet and wrapped it in cloths, and carried it on their shoulders. 35 Then, following Moses’ instructions, they asked the Egyptians for clothing, as well as for items of silver and gold. 36 And because Jehovah had caused the Egyptians to view them favorably, they [gave them these things]… so they plundered the Egyptians.

37 Then the children of IsraEl got up and left RaMesse, traveling toward to SocChoth (which included some six-hundred-thousand men on foot) with everything they owned, 38 along with a huge number of others who left with them. This included their sheep, bulls, and many cattle. 39 [And when they got there], they baked the dough that they had brought from Egypt into fermentation-free loaves (there was still no fermentation in the dough), because the Egyptians hadn’t allowed them to stay any longer. For since they had been literally thrown out, they hadn’t been allowed enough time to properly prepare for their journey.

40 Now, though it had been four hundred and thirty years that the children of IsraEl been in the land of CanaAn and in the land of Egypt; 41 the whole army of Jehovah left the land of Egypt that night. 42 And since this was [the night] that they kept watching for Jehovah to bring them out of the land of Egypt; all the children of IsraEl were to observe it as a night of watch to Jehovah throughout all their generations.

43 Then the Lord told Moses and Aaron, ‘This is the Law regarding the Passover: No stranger may eat it, 44 and any slave or servant that you buy must be circumcised before he can eat it. 45 However, visitors and people you hire can’t eat it. 46 It must be eaten in one house, because you can’t carry the flesh outside of the house… and no bones should be broken. 47 The entire gathering of the children of IsraEl must continue to do this.

48 ‘And if any converts come and want to observe the Passover to Jehovah, you must circumcise all their males before they can [partake of] the sacrifice; for thereafter, they will be treated as residents in the land. However, no one who is uncircumcised may eat it. 49 So there will be just one Law, and it will apply to both the native residents and to those who come to be converts among you.’

50 Then the children of IsraEl did exactly as Jehovah had instructed Moses and Aaron. 51 And that was the day Jehovah brought the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt with all their armies.

Chapter 13

1 Then the Lord told Moses: 2 ‘All the first-fathered and firstborn that open any womb among the children of IsraEl, whether of men or animals, are to be set aside as holy to Me, for they are Mine!’

3 And Moses said to the people: ‘Remember this day! [It’s the one] when you were brought out of the land of Egypt and out of the house of slavery; for Jehovah brought you out of there with His strong hand. So, fermentation must not be eaten 4 on this day of new grain that you left. 5 And when Jehovah your God brings you into the land of the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Evites, Jebusites, Gergeshites, and Pherezites, which He swore to your ancestors that He would give you (a land that is flowing with milk and honey), you must perform the same service during this month. 6 You will all eat fermentation-free bread for six days, and the seventh day will be a feast day to Jehovah…  7 so you will eat fermentation-free bread for seven days. Nothing with fermentation may be seen among you, nor may you have fermentation inside all of your borders. 8 And you must say to your sons on this day: This is how Jehovah dealt with me as I was leaving Egypt.

9 ‘Let this always serve as a sign on your hand and as something in front of your eyes to remember, so that Jehovah’s Law will always stay on your [lips]! Because, Jehovah God brought you out of Egypt with His mighty hand. 10 Therefore, each year at this same time and season, you must observe this Law.

11 ‘And when Jehovah your God brings you into the land of the CanaAnites, which He swore to your ancestors that he would give to you; 12 you must set aside every male that opens a womb to Jehovah. This includes those among your flocks and herds of cattle… as many as you have. [All the] males must be [set aside as] holy to Jehovah! 13 However, when it comes to your burros; you must offer a sheep instead… you can’t exchange it, you must buy it back [from Jehovah], and you must buy back every firstborn son.

14 ‘And if your son should ever ask you, Why are we doing this? You must tell him: Jehovah brought us out of Egypt and out of the house of slavery with His mighty hand. 15 And when Pharaoh’s heart became hard and [he refused] to send us away, [God] slaughtered all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the men and the animals. So that’s why we offer every male that opens a womb to Jehovah, and that’s why we buy back all of our firstborn sons.

16 ‘Therefore, may this be a sign on your hand and something that is always fixed in front of your eyes… because Jehovah brought you out of Egypt with His mighty hand.’

17 Well, after Pharaoh had sent the people away, God didn’t lead them toward the land of the Philistines (though it wasn’t far away), because God said: ‘[I’m doing this is to keep] the people from having a change of heart when they see war, and from thereafter returning to Egypt.’ 18 So God led them around the desert toward the Red Sea.

It was the fifth generation of the children of IsraEl that left the land of Egypt. 19 And Moses took JoSeph’s bones along, because [JoSeph] had made the children of IsraEl swear, saying: ‘God will surely visit you, so you must carry my bones back with you.’

20 Thereafter, the children of IsraEl left SucCoth and went to camp at Othom, which is near the desert. 21 God led them there using a tall column of clouds during the day (to show them the way) and a tall column of fire during the night. 22 The column of clouds was there all day long, every day, and the column of fire was always there in front of the people all night long.

Chapter 14

1 Then the Lord said to Moses: 2 ‘Tell the children of IsraEl to turn around and set up camp in front of the village of the Magdol (the Watchtower)… between it and the sea, across from BeEl-SepPhon. Camp there in front of them, next to the sea. 3 For Pharaoh will say to his people, The children of IsraEl are just wandering around in the land, and now they’re boxed in! 4 Then I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after you. So, Pharaoh and his whole army will bring glory to Me, and all the Egyptians will know that I am Jehovah.’ And that’s what happened.

5 Well, a report was carried to the king of the Egyptians that the people had run away. And this changed the hearts of Pharaoh and his servants against the [children of IsraEl], and they started asking, ‘What have we done by allowing the children of IsraEl to go, rather than having them [stay here and] serve us?’ 6 So Pharaoh prepared his chariots and took his [whole army] with him… 7 six hundred of their best chariots, the entire Egyptian cavalry, and all his generals. 8 And it was because Jehovah had hardened the hearts of Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) and his servants that he chased after the children of IsraEl. For the children of IsraEl allowed them the upper hand, 9 and when the Egyptians caught up with them, they found them camped next to the sea.

So, there was all of Pharaoh’s cavalry, chariots, horsemen, and entire army at a village near BeEl-SepPhon. 10 And as Pharaoh approached, the children of IsraEl could see the Egyptians coming up behind them, which terrified them, and they started calling out to Jehovah.

11 And at that, they asked Moses: ‘Aren’t there enough graves in the land of Egypt so that you had to bring us out here to be killed in the desert? What have you done to us by taking us out of Egypt? 12 Wasn’t it enough that we told you back in Egypt to leave us alone so that we could keep on serving the Egyptians? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to have us die here in this desert!’

13 But Moses said to the people: ‘Don’t be afraid; Stand here and watch the salvation that comes from Jehovah through the things that He will do for us on this day. Do you see all those Egyptians today? You won’t see them again in this age, 14 because Jehovah is going to fight for you and bring peace to you!’

15 Then the Lord asked Moses: ‘Why are they shouting to Me? Speak to the children of IsraEl and tell them to continue on! 16 Just lift your walking stick and raise your hands over the sea, and it will split open… then you can [lead] the children of IsraEl across on dry land through the midst of the sea!

17 ‘Then after that, {Look!} I will harden the hearts of Pharaoh and all the Egyptians, and they will chase after you… and that’s when Pharaoh, his army, his chariots, and all his horses will glorify Me. 18 Yes, everyone in Egypt will know that I am Jehovah when I’m glorified by Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horses.’

19 And immediately thereafter, the messenger of God who had been traveling in front of the camp of the children of IsraEl went around to its rear… for the column of clouds moved to the rear and stayed behind them, 20 between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of IsraEl. And as it was standing there between them, it started to get dark… in fact, the night became so black that the [Egyptian army] couldn’t come any closer all-night long.

21 Then when Moses lifted his arms over the sea, the Lord pushed the water back with a strong south wind [that blew] all night long. This dried the seabed and it kept the water divided. 22 So the children of IsraEl walked down through the midst of the sea on dry land, as the walls of water stood to their right and to their left. 23 But then the Egyptians went in and chased after them… all of Pharaoh’s horses, chariots, and horsemen also went [down into] the midst of the sea.

24 Well, it was during the morning watch that Jehovah looked at the Egyptians through the columns of fire and clouds, and [He created] trouble in their camp, 25 for the wheels on their chariots sank to their axels, making them very hard to pull. And the Egyptians started saying, ‘Let’s run from the face of IsraEl, because Jehovah is fighting for them and against the Egyptians!’

26 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, stretch your arms out over the sea and let the water fall back into its place… let it cover the Egyptian chariots and their riders.’

27 So Moses stretched his arms out over the sea, and the water returned to its place around daybreak. The Egyptians tried to run from the water, but Jehovah just kept shaking them back into the midst of the sea. 28 It returned and covered the chariots and their riders, along with the whole army of Pharaoh that followed them into the sea, leaving no survivors. 29 Yet the children of IsraEl had been able to cross through the midst of the sea on dry land with the water standing like walls on their right and on their left.

30 So Jehovah saved IsraEl from the hands of the Egyptians that day, and IsraEl could see the Egyptians lying dead on the shore. 31 And after IsraEl had witnessed Jehovah’s mighty hand in the things that He did to the Egyptians, they started fearing Jehovah… trusting in God and in His servant Moses.

Chapter 15

1 Thereafter, Moses and the children of IsraEl sang this song to God:

‘Let us sing to Jehovah;
For He has been glorified.

‘The horses and riders He’s tossed in the sea…
2 He’s been our protector and helper,
And He has brought us salvation.

‘This is my God and I’ll praise Him…
He’s the God of my fathers and I’ll hold Him high.
3 He’s the Lord who crushes with war;
Jehovah is His [Great] Name.

4 ‘Into the sea, He has thrown
The army and chariots of Pharaoh.
It swallowed his best mounted generals,
5 And He covered them up with the water,
Where they sank to the bottom like stones.

6 ‘The strength of Your right hand, O God,
Has now proven its glory.
For, with Your right hand, O God,
You have shattered of all Your enemies.

7 ‘In Your glory, You’ve smashed those who hate us,
As You sent them Your rage,
Which has consumed them like stubble.

8 ‘By the spirit of Your rage, the waters had split…
The waters stood firm, like a wall…
You banked the waves in the midst of the sea.

9 ‘But our enemies said, We will chase them down,
Then divide their things and bring
ourselves joy.
We will destroy with our swords…
With our mighty hands, we will beat them.

10 ‘But then, [Jehovah] sent out His wind,
And the sea covered them over…
They sank in the waters like lead.

11 ‘So, who among gods is like You, O Lord…
To whom can You be compared?
For Your holy ways bring glory to You,
And we marvel at all of Your glories.

12 ‘You raised Your right hand and sent wonders,
For the earth has swallowed them down.
13 But You righteously guided those whom You bought
(Those whom You called by Your might)
To the Holy Place of Your rest.

14 ‘But, when the nations heard about this,
They all became quite enraged…
Pangs of birth fell upon the Philistines,
15 And the princes of Edom and Moab,
As well as their chiefs ran away.
They each started to tremble,
And all in CanaAn just melted away.

16 ‘May they shake in fear of the strength of Your arm,
And may they become like the stones, O Lord,
Until all Your people have passed them by…
Until those You’ve purchased have passed them by.

17 ‘Now, take us and plant us in the mountains we’ll inherit,
And in the homes You’re preparing, O Lord…
In the place of safety, prepared by Your hands.
18 For Jehovah reigns through the ages,
And through the ages of ages.

19 ‘Pharaoh’s horses sank into the sea,
Along with his chariots and horsemen.
Then, they were covered with water,
Where the children of IsraEl had walked on dry land
Through the midst of the sea.’

20 Then the Prophetess MiriAm (Aaron’s sister) picked up her tambourine, and all the other women went to get their tambourines, and they started dancing. 21 MiriAm led them, singing:

‘Let us sing to Jehovah;
For, He has been glorified.
The horses and riders He’s tossed in the sea…’

22 Well thereafter, Moses led the children of IsraEl away from the Red Sea and into the desert of Sur. But after [traveling] through the desert for three days, they hadn’t found any water to drink. 23 And when they got to MerRha (Bitterness), they couldn’t drink the water there, because it was bitter. (That’s why [Moses] named that place Bitterness).

24 Then the people started complaining about Moses, asking: ‘What are we going to drink?’

25 So Moses called to Jehovah, and the Lord showed him a tree, which [Moses] threw into the water… and the water became sweet. This is also the place where [God] gave him His Laws and decisions, and where He showed His approval. 26 For [the Lord] said: ‘If you will listen to the voice of Jehovah your God… if you’ll do the things that please Him, obey His Commandments, and keep all His Laws; I won’t bring any of the [plagues] upon you that I brought upon the Egyptians. For I am Jehovah, the God who provides you with healing.’

27 Then when they arrived at AiLim, they found twelve springs of water and seventy branching palm trees, so they camped there by the water.

Chapter 16

1 Thereafter, they left AiLim, and the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl traveled into the Sin Desert, which is between AiLim and Sinai. And on the fifteenth day of the second month from their leaving the land of Egypt, 2 the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl [once again] started complaining to Moses and Aaron. 3 They told them: ‘We would rather have died [with those who were] struck by Jehovah in the land of Egypt, back when we could sit by the stew pots and eat all the bread we wanted! But now you’ve brought us out into this desert just to starve us all to death!’

4 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Look! I will rain bread upon you from the skies. Then the people will go out and gather their allotment for each day, so I can test them to see whether they will follow My Law. 5 For on the sixth day they must gather all that they can, and it will be double that which they could gather on the previous days.’

6 So Moses and Aaron spoke to the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl, saying: ‘This evening you will realize that it was Jehovah who brought you out of the land of Egypt; 7 and tomorrow morning you will see the glory of the Lord, since He has heard you complaining against Him… and what are we that you should keep complaining about us?’

8 Then Moses continued, saying: ‘This evening, Jehovah will give you meat to eat; and in the morning, He will provide enough bread to satisfy you. For Jehovah has heard all the complaints that you have against us… yet, what are we? You aren’t complaining against us, but against God!’

9 And Moses said to Aaron: ‘Now, tell the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl that they must go over and approach God, since He has heard all their complaining!’

10 So after Aaron said this to them, they all turned and faced the desert… and the glory of the Lord appeared in a cloud! 11 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and said: 12 ‘I’ve heard all the children of IsraEl’s complaining, so tell them: This evening you will eat meat, and in the morning you will have enough bread to satisfy you… and then you will know that I am Jehovah your God.

13 Well that evening, a [huge flock] of quail flew in and covered the camp. 14 And the next morning, after the dew around about the camp had dried; {Look!} on the surface of the desert (lying there like frost) was small things that looked like white coriander seeds. 15 And when the children of IsraEl saw them, they asked each other: ‘What is this (heb. man-nah)?’ Because, they didn’t know what it was. And Moses told them: 16 ‘This is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat… it’s what Jehovah has approved. So, every man should gather a third of a bushel for each person in his family. You and those who are living with you should go out and gather it.’

17 And that’s what the children of IsraEl did. Though some gathered more and others gathered less, 18 the ones who gathered the full third of a bushel didn’t have any leftovers, and those who gathered less never went hungry. So they all gathered just what their households required.

19 Then Moses told them: ‘Now, none of you may save any of this for the next morning.’

20 However, many of them wouldn’t listen to Moses, and they tried to keep it until the following morning… but by then it had worms and it smelled… and all of this irritated Moses. 21 So each morning, everyone would collect all that they needed, and everything melted after the sun went down. 22 Then on the sixth day, they gathered twice as much as they needed… two-thirds of a bushel per person.

Well, all the chiefs of their gathering thereafter came and reported all that was happening to Moses. 23 And Moses asked: ‘Didn’t the Lord tell us that tomorrow is the Sabbath… a holy [day of] rest to Jehovah? Therefore, bake all that you can bake and boil all that you can boil, so that the leftovers can be stored for tomorrow!’

24 [So on the sixth day], they stored the leftovers until the next morning, just as Moses told them, and it didn’t stink and there weren’t any worms in it.

25 [And then the next day], Moses said: ‘This is what you must eat today; for since this day is a Sabbath to Jehovah, you won’t find any of it out in the fields. 26 You must collect it for six days, but because the seventh day is a Sabbath, there won’t be any then.’

27 However, on the seventh day some of the people still went out to collect it, but they couldn’t find any. 28 So the Lord said to Moses: ‘How long are they going to fail to listen to My commands and [obey] My laws? 29 Look; I’ve given them this day as the Sabbath, and I gave them enough bread to last for two days on the sixth day. So from now on, they must all just sit there in their homes… don’t not allow anyone to leave his place on the seventh day!’

30 Well thereafter, the people kept the Sabbath on the seventh day.

31 The children of IsraEl called this [food], manna. It looked like white coriander seeds and tasted like crackers and honey.

32 Then Moses said, ‘This is what Jehovah has commanded: We are to collect a third of a bushel of manna and set it aside so that future generations can see the bread that you ate in the desert after Jehovah led you out of the land of Egypt.’ 33 And he told Aaron: ‘Take a gold pot and fill it with a full third-of-a-bushel of manna, then store it away for God and keep it for future generations.’

34 And just as the Lord told Moses, Aaron stored it away as a testimony.

35 So the children of IsraEl ate manna for forty years. They ate manna until they got to the land of Phoenicia. 36 Now, a homer (a third of a bushel) was a tenth of an ephah (three bath measures).

Chapter 17

1 Thereafter, the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl left the Sin Desert, following the order of their camps, and the Lord told them to camp in RaphiDin. However, there was no water for the people to drink in this place, 2 so they started shouting at Moses and saying, ‘Give us water to drink!’

And Moses asked them: ‘Why are you shouting at me, and why are you asking Jehovah to prove Himself?

3 Well, the people were very thirsty, and they complained again to Moses, saying, ‘What’s the point? Did you bring us up out of Egypt to kill us along with our children and cattle with thirst?’

4 Then Moses called to Jehovah, and said: ‘What should I do with these people… before long they will stone me!’

5 And Jehovah replied to Moses: ‘Go before the people and bring along some of their elders. Then take the walking stick with which you slapped the [Nile] River, into your hands 6 and go to the rock in the dry place (Horeb) where {Look!} I’ll be standing before you; [then you must] strike the rock and water will pour out of it, so the people will [have something to] drink.’

Well thereafter, Moses did this in front of the sons of IsraEl. 7 And then he named that place, ‘Proof and Shouting,’ because of all the shouting of the children of IsraEl, [as they demanded that] Jehovah prove Himself. For they had asked, ‘Is Jehovah among us or not?’

8 Then the Amalekites came to fight against IsraEl in RaphiDin. 9 And Moses said to JoShua: ‘Choose your best men and form battle lines against the Amalekites tomorrow. {Look!} I will be standing on top of the hill with the walking stick of God in my hands.’

10 So JoShua did just as Moses told him. He went out and formed his army in battle lines against the Amalekites; then Moses, Aaron, and Or went up to the top of the hill. 11 Well, whenever Moses raised his arms, IsraEl would be superior; but when he let them down, the Amalekites were more successful. 12 But soon Moses’ arms got tired, so they found a rock and had him sit on top of it; then Aaron and Or supported his arms on either side, holding them there until the sun set. 13 So JoShua drove the Amalekites and all their people away by slaughtering them with swords.

14 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Write this in a scroll, so it will be remembered. Tell JoShua that I’m going to totally blot out all memory of the Amalekites from under the skies!’

15 Well after that, Moses built an altar to Jehovah there, and he named it ‘Jehovah is My Refuge,’ 16 because Jehovah was secretly waging war against all generations of the Amalekites.

Chapter 18

1 Meanwhile, His Excellence (the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law) heard of all that Jehovah had done for his people IsraEl by bringing them out of Egypt. 2 So His Excellence [went to see Moses], bringing along Moses’ woman SepPhoran (since [Moses] had sent her 3 and her two sons away). [One of his sons] was named Gersam (Visitor), because, as [Moses] said: ‘I was a visitor in a strange land,’ 4 and [the other was named] EliEzer (My God is my Helper), because as [Moses] said: ‘The God of my fathers is my helper and He rescued me from the hands of Pharaoh.’

5 His Excellence took [Moses’ family] to him in the desert… to his camp on the Mountain of God. 6 And when Moses was told, ‘Look! His Excellence (your father-in-law) is coming and he’s bringing your wife and two sons with him,’ 7 Moses went out to meet them. Then [Moses] bowed low before his father-in-law and kissed him, then they hugged each other, and he led them into his tent, 8 where Moses told his father-in-law about everything that Jehovah had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for IsraEl’s sake, as well as about all the things that had happened to them along the way, and of the way Jehovah had rescued them from the hands of Pharaoh and the Egyptians.

9 Well, His Excellence was amazed by all the good things that Jehovah had done for them by rescuing them, 10 and he said: ‘Praise Jehovah, because He rescued them from the hands of Pharaoh and the Egyptians! 11 Now I now know that Jehovah is higher than all [other] gods; for He did this to those who were treating [the children of IsraEl so poorly].’

12 Then His Excellence presented whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for God, and Aaron and all the elders of IsraEl came to eat bread before God, along with Moses’ father-in-law.

13 Well, the next morning, Moses sat down to [serve as] judge for the people, and they [kept coming to] him all day long. 14 Then when His Excellence noticed all that [Moses was doing], he asked, ‘Why are you sitting there all by yourself as the people come to you from morning until night?’ 15 And Moses replied: ‘The people are coming to me to receive God’s decisions. 16 So, whenever they have a disagreement, they come to me and I judge each [case]. I teach them the Laws of God and [I judge by] His Laws.’

17 However, Moses’ father-in-law told him: ‘You aren’t handling this thing right, 18 for this will just wear you down… and your people will get tired of it too. You won’t be able to keep on doing this all by yourself. 19 So listen to me; I’m going to tell you what to do, and God will be with you.

‘You can be [the one] who [leads] the people in matters that pertain to God, and you can take their problems before God. 20 You should also [teach] them God’s [ways] and His Laws, and show them how to act and the things that they should be doing. 21 But keep an eye out among the people for capable, righteous men who fear God… righteous men who hate pride. Then appoint them as chiefs over thousands, chiefs over hundreds, chiefs over fifties, and chiefs over tens… 22 let them spend all their time judging. And whenever a problem is too great, then they should bring it to you. Let them help you to free up your [time] by judging the smaller cases. 23 And if you do that, God will strengthen you, you will [have time to take care of more important matters], and these people will [return to their tents] more peacefully.’

24 Well, Moses paid attention to his father-in-law’s suggestion and did everything that he said. 25 He chose capable men throughout all of IsraEl and made them chiefs of thousands, chiefs of hundreds, chiefs of fifties, and chiefs of tens. 26 Then they judged the people, and whenever a matter was too weighty, they brought it to Moses, while they judged the lighter matters.

27 After that, Moses [said goodbye] to his father-in-law, and [His Excellence] returned to his own land.

Chapter 19

1 Well, it was on that same day (in the third month after the children of IsraEl left the land of Egypt) that they arrived in the Sinai desert. 2 They had left RaphiDin and traveled through the desert to Sinai, and IsraEl set up camp there in front of the mountain.

3 Then Moses climbed the Mountain of God, and God called to him on the mountain, saying: ‘You must say this to the house of Jacob and report [My words] to the children of IsraEl: 4 You have seen all that I’ve done to the Egyptians, and how I lifted you as on the wings of eagles and drawn you close to Me. 5 Now, if you will listen to what I say and keep My Sacred Agreement, you will be a special people to Me that will be higher than all other nations. And because the whole earth is Mine, 6 you will become My holy nation and a Kingdom of Priests.

‘Now, [go] and tell this to the children of IsraEl!’

7 So Moses went back and called the people’s elders, then he laid out what God had said exactly as He said it. 8 And all the people replied unanimously, saying, ‘We will listen to and obey everything that God has said!’ And Moses reported their words to God.

9 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘{Look!} I’m going to come to you in a column of clouds so the people can hear Me speaking to you. And after that, through the age, they will believe you.’ Then Moses reported back to the people about what the Lord had said.

10 Thereafter, the Lord said to Moses: ‘Go down and give these solemn instructions to the people: They must cleanse themselves both today and tomorrow, and they must wash their clothes. 11 Make sure they are ready by the third day, because on the third day, the Lord will descend upon Mount Sinai before all the people. 12 Also, make sure that they keep themselves some distance from the mountain. Tell them: Be careful not to step on any part of the mountain or to touch any part of it. For anyone who touches the mountain will surely die. 13 No hand should touch it, and anyone who does so must be pelted with rocks or shot through with arrows… whether it’s a man or an animal, [he or she] must not be allowed to live! People may only climb the mountain after the voices, trumpeting, and clouds are gone.’

14 So Moses went down the mountain to the people. He then cleansed them and [had them] wash their clothes. 15 He told them: ‘Get ready… and for the next three days, no [man] should even get close to a woman!’

16 Then, as the morning of the third day dawned, there were voices, there was lightning, there was a dark cloud on Sinai, and they heard a trumpeting sound that was so loud that the people in the camp were trembling. 17 And that’s when Moses led the people out of the camp to meet God.

Well, they were all standing there, close to the camp, 18 and then the whole mountain started to smoke, because The God had descended upon it in fire… and the smoke kept rising as though it [was coming from] a furnace, which left the people in awe.

19 Then the trumpeting got even louder as Moses spoke, and God started answering him with a voice… 20 yes, Jehovah descended to the top of Mount Sinai and He called to Moses, [telling him to come to Him] on top of the mountain! So Moses went up, 21 and God then said this to Moses: ‘Go down and warn the people [again] not to approach to see God, for this will cause many of them to [die]. 22 And make sure that any Priests who come close to Jehovah God have cleansed themselves, so He doesn’t [have to] destroy some of them!’

23 Then Moses said to God: ‘The people won’t be able to approach Mount Sinai, because You warned us, saying, Set boundaries around the mountain and make it holy.’

24 And at that, the Lord told him: ‘Now, go down [the mountain] and bring Aaron back up here with you. But don’t allow the Priests or the people to force their way up to God, for fear that Jehovah will destroy them.’

25 So Moses went [back] down to the people and reminded them [once again].

Chapter 20

1 Then the Lord said all of this:

2 ‘I am Jehovah… I’m your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt and out of the house of slavery. 3 So, you must have no gods other than Me.

4 ‘You must not make images for yourselves of anything in the skies above, on the earth below, or of things that live in the water or under the ground. 5 You must not bow before them or serve them; for I, Jehovah your God, am a zealous God, and I bring the sins of the ancestors upon the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of those who hate Me. 6 Yet, I am merciful to the thousands who love Me and keep My Commandments.

7 ‘You must not misuse the Name of your God Jehovah; for Jehovah your God will not forgive those who misuse His Name.

8 ‘Keep the Sabbath day and make it holy. 9 You may work and get everything done in six days. 10 However, the seventh day is the Sabbath of your God Jehovah, and you must do no work… not you, your sons, your daughters, your male servants, your female servants, your oxen, your burros, any of your cattle, or any strangers that are visiting among you. 11 For after Jehovah made the skies, the lands, the seas, and everything in them, He rested on the seventh day. Then Jehovah blest the seventh day and made it holy.

12 ‘Honor your father and mother, as Jehovah your God commanded you, so that things may go well for you and that you may live a long time in the land that Jehovah your God is giving to you.

13 ‘You must not commit murder.

14 ‘You must not commit adultery.

15 ‘You must not steal.

16 ‘You must not testify falsely against your neighbor.

17 ‘You must not desire your neighbor’s woman, his house, his field, his male servant, his female servant, his ox, his burro, any other animal, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.’

18 Well all the while, the people were being distracted by all the thunder and lightning, the sounds of the trumpets, and the smoke on the mountain; and everyone was afraid and backing far away. 19 So they told Moses: ‘You talk to us… don’t let God talk to us, because we’re afraid that we might die!’

20 And Moses said to them: ‘Be courageous! For The God came here to test you and to put the fear of Him into you, so you won’t sin.’ 21 However, the people just kept backing away.

Then Moses went into the darkness where God was. 22 And Jehovah said to Moses, ‘This is what you must say to the house of Jacob and what you must report to the children of IsraEl: Now you have seen Me speaking to you from the sky; 23 so, don’t make gods of silver or gold for yourselves. 24 You may make an Altar to Me from the dirt in whichever place that I record My name, and that’s where you must sacrifice your whole burnt offerings, as well as the peace offerings of your sheep and calves, and that’s where I will come to you and bless you.

25However, if you should choose to build a stone Altar to Me, don’t use cut stones; because, if you use tools on them, they will become unclean. 26 And don’t build any steps up to My Altar, so that the naked [parts of your bodies] will be seen from [below].’

Chapter 21

1 ‘Now, these are the Laws that you are to show to them:

2 ‘If you buy a Hebrew slave, he may only serve you for six years; for in the seventh year, he must be set free without cost. 3 If he comes alone, he must leave alone; but if his woman comes with him, his woman must also leave with him. 4 However, if his master gives him a woman and she gives birth to sons or daughters; she and her children belong to the master, so [the slave] will leave alone. 5 But if the slave should say, I love my master, my woman, and my children, so I don’t want to leave free; 6 his master should bring him to the judgment-seat of God and take him up to the door, where he will use an awl to punch [a hole through] his ear against the doorframe, [to signify] that he will serve [his master] through the age.

7 ‘And if anyone sells his daughter as a house slave; she may not be sent away as other female slaves are released. 8 For if she has been involved with him and if she thereafter hasn’t been found pleasing by him, he may only set her free… he may not sell her to some foreigner after that. 9 And if he has obtained the woman for his son, he must treat her as his own daughter. 10 But if he has taken her for himself, he must never deprive her of her clothing, her needs, or her companionship with him. 11 If he refuses to do any of these three things for her, she must be set free at no cost.

12 ‘If any man strikes another man and kills him, he must absolutely be put to death. 13 But if such a thing should happen by accident, or if God [allows the situation that causes the death]; I will provide a place to which the killer can run. 14 However, if someone who lies in wait and plans to murder his neighbor runs to that refuge, you must take him [far] from My Altar and put him to death.

15 ‘Whoever beats his father or mother must be put to death, 16 and whoever curses his father or mother must die.

17 ‘If someone overpowers and kidnaps one of the children of IsraEl and sells him, or if he’s caught with him; [the kidnapper] must die.

18 ‘If two men are shouting at each other and one hits the other with a rock or with his fist, and he doesn’t die but is laid up in bed; 19 the man who hit him will be cleared if the other person can get up and walk (even with the aid of a cane), as long as he pays for the lost time and the cost of his healing.

20 ‘If a man hits his male or female slave with a cane and the person dies as the result, he must be punished. 21 However if the slave continues to live a few days after that, the master shouldn’t be punished because it’s his own loss.

22 ‘If two men are fighting and [one] hits a pregnant woman and her child is born deformed as the result; he must be forced to pay whatever amount her man demands of him. 23 But if the child is born perfectly formed [though injured], he must pay life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burning for burning, wound for wound, whipping for whipping.

26 ‘If anyone should hit their male or female slave in the eye and put it out, that slave should be set free because of the eye injury. 27 And if he [breaks or knocks out] a male or female slave’s tooth, that slave must be set free because of the tooth.

28 ‘If a bull gores a man or a woman and he or she dies, the bull must be stoned to death and its flesh may not be eaten… however, the bull’s owner will be [free of guilt]. 29 But if the bull has been known to gore before and the owner was told and hasn’t done anything about it, and then it kills a man or woman; the bull must be stoned and its owner must also die. 30 However, if a ransom is demanded instead, he must pay whatever is asked for his life.

31 ‘If a bull gores someone’s son or daughter; it must be handled according to the law that was given. 32 But if the bull gores a male or female slave; their master must be paid thirty double-silver coins, and the bull must be stoned.

33 ‘If anyone digs an open pit or a hole in rock and fails to cover it, and an ox or a burro falls into it; 34 the owner of the pit must pay a compensation to [the animal’s] owner, but the dead [animal] will thereafter be his.

35 ‘And if a man’s bull should gore his neighbor’s bull and kill it; they must sell the living bull and divide the money, then divide up the dead bull. 36 However, if the bull has been known to gore in the past and his owner knew about this and failed to do anything about it; he must pay for the bull, and the dead one won’t be his.’

Chapter 22

1 ‘If someone should steal an ox or a sheep and kills it or sells it; he must pay back five calves for a calf, and four sheep for a sheep. 2 And if a thief should be caught inside a fence and is beaten and dies as the result; no one will be found guilty [of killing him]. 3 However, if someone [kills a thief] the next day, he is guilty and should be [put to death].

‘If a thief has nothing left [of what he stole]; he can be sold [as a slave] to repay what he has stolen. 4 But if the thing he stole is still around and can be found alive in his possession (as with an ox or a sheep); he must pay back twice as much.

5 ‘And if anyone [has allowed his cattle] to strip his own field or vineyard, and then he sends his animals to graze in someone else’s field; he must [pay his neighbor back] out of the produce from his own field. But if the animals strip [his neighbor’s] entire field; he must pay with the best of his field and the best of his vineyard.

6 ‘Now, if [someone sets a] fire (even if he thinks it has gone out) and it burns a threshing floor or a field of grain; the one who sets the fire must pay a compensation.

7 ‘If anyone gives his neighbor money or other [valuables] to keep and they are stolen from the man’s house; the thief must repay double if he’s caught. 8 But if the thief isn’t caught, the owner of the house must stand before God and swear that he hasn’t done anything wrong to whatever his neighbor left with him. 9 Then every accusation, whether it involves a calf, a burro, a sheep, some clothing (or whatever)… every claim of loss must be taken before God. And anyone who is found guilty by God must repay his neighbor with twice as much.

10 ‘And if anyone leaves a calf, a sheep, or any other animal with his neighbor and it is wounded or it dies – and no one knows for sure how it happened – 11 each must swear an oath to God that he isn’t guilty in any way. Then his master should find him innocent and he won’t have to pay a compensation. 12 However, if it was stolen from him; he must repay the owner. 13 And if someone stole any other type of animal; [he must] return the animal to its owner, and he won’t have to pay a compensation.

14 ‘If anyone borrows [an animal] from his neighbor and it is wounded, or dies, or is stolen while its owner is away; he must be compensated for it. 15 But if the owner is there; he doesn’t have to pay compensation. And if it is something that he rented; [the owner] must be paid back in lieu of his rent.

16 ‘If anyone deceives a virgin to whom he isn’t engaged, and [has sex] with her; he must take her as his woman. 17 But if her father refuses and won’t consent to giving her to be his woman; he must pay her father the amount of dowry that is required for a virgin.

18 ‘You must not [seek the aid of] sorcerers.

19 ‘Anyone who [has sex] with an animal must be put to death.

20 ‘Anyone who offers sacrifices to a god other than Jehovah, must be put to death.

21 ‘You must not harm strangers or oppress them, because you were once strangers in the land of Egypt.

22 ‘You must not do anything to harm widows or orphans. 23 For if you treat them badly, they should call out to Me and I will hear them… 24 and that will make Me very angry. Then you will be killed with a sword, so that your woman will become a widow and your children will become orphans.

25 If you lend money to one of your poor brothers who lives nearby; you shouldn’t be hard on him and you shouldn’t charge him interest. 26 And if you take your neighbor’s robe as security, you must make sure that he gets it back before sunset. 27 Since it is all that covers his nakedness, how could he then go to bed? And if he calls out to Me, I will listen, because I am merciful.

28 ‘You should never speak badly of your mighty ones (gr. Theousgods plural) or say bad things about the rulers of your people.

29 ‘You must never hold back the first fruitage of your threshing floor [or of your olive or wine] press.

‘You must give your first-born sons to Me, 30 as well as those of your calves, sheep, and burros. They may stay under their mothers for seven days, but on the eighth day, you must offer them to Me.

31 ‘You must be a holy [people] to Me; therefore, you may not eat the flesh of wild animals… you should throw it to the dogs.’

Chapter 23

1 ‘You should not accept false testimony, nor should you allow anyone who is crooked to provide false testimony.

2 ‘You must not join a mob to do bad things, nor should you go along with with the majority when they are wrong.

3 ‘If a man is found guilty, you must not [free him from his responsibilities] just because he’s poor, 4 nor should you [find any man guilty] because he’s poor.

5 ‘If you find your enemy’s ox or burro wandering loose, you must catch it and return it to him. 6 And if you see your enemy’s burro collapsed under its load, you shouldn’t just pass it by. You must help him to get it back on its feet.

7 ‘Never do anything that’s unfair. You shouldn’t kill the innocent along with the guilty, or accept a bribe to find a guilty person innocent. 8 Nor should you accept gifts [when judging], because gifts blind the eyes of those who can see and twist the words of justice.

9 ‘You should never mistreat a stranger, because you know how they feel, since you were once strangers in the land of Egypt.

10 ‘You can plant your field and harvest it for six years. 11 However, every seven years you must leave it alone and allow it to rest, so the poor of your nation can [find] food there, and the wild animals can eat whatever is left. That’s also what you must do to your vineyards and your olive groves.

12 ‘You should work for six days, but the seventh day is a day of rest, so that your burro, your ox, the sons of your female slaves, and strangers may be refreshed.

13 ‘Guard all the things that I have commanded you, and don’t mention the names of other gods or speak of them in any way.

14 ‘You must hold a feast to Me three times each year. 15 Be sure to observe the Feast of Fermentation-Free Bread. You must eat fermentation-free bread for seven days (as I told you before) during the time of the month of new grain, because that’s when you came out of Egypt… and don’t approach Me empty-handed!

16 ‘You must observe a feast when you harvest the first-fruits of your work, no matter what you have planted in your field. And [you must observe] a feast at the end of the year when you harvest the crops in your field. 17 So, all your males must appear before Jehovah your God three times each year.

18 ‘And when I drive the other nations out of your midst and widen your borders, you must never offer fermented bread along with the blood sacrifices, nor should the fat of My feast be allowed to stay [on the altar] until the next morning.

19 ‘You must bring all the first fruitage of your fields to the House of your God, Jehovah.

‘You must never boil a lamb in its mother’s milk.

20 ‘{Look!} I’m going to send My messenger to you in order to keep you headed in the right direction; for he will lead you into the land that I have prepared for you. 21 Be sure to listen to him… obey him! He won’t give in to you, because he carries My Name.

22 ‘Tell the children of IsraEl that if they will listen to what I say and do everything that I tell them, I will be an enemy to their enemies, and I will oppose anyone who is against them. 23 Then I will send My messenger to serve as their leader, and [he will] bring them to [the land of] the Amorites, Chettites, Pherezites, CanaAnites, Gergeshites, Evites, and Jebusites, whom I will destroy. 24 But [IsraEl] must not worship or serve the gods [of those people], nor should they do any of the things that they are doing. Rather, [those people] must all be destroyed and their [sacred] columns must be pulled down.

25 ‘If you serve Jehovah your God, I will bless your bread, your wine, and your water, and I will keep you from getting sick. 26 There won’t be anyone in your land who is impotent or infertile, and you will live full lives. 27 I will send terror ahead you, all the nations in the land you’re entering will be amazed by you, and I will make all your enemies run from you. 28 I will send hornets ahead of you to drive the Amorites, Evites, CanaAnites, and the Chettites away from you. 29 I won’t throw them out in the first year, so the fields don’t grow wild and allow wild animals to multiply there. 30 But before long, I will start throwing them out ahead of you, until you grow and inherit the land. 31 Then I will set your borders from the Red Sea to the [MediTerranean], and from the desert to the great EuPhrates River.

‘Since I will be handing over those who are living in the land and driving them away from you, 32 you must make no treaties with them or with their gods. 33 For they won’t be allowed to live in your land, lest they cause you to sin against Me. Because, if you serve their gods, that will lead to your downfall.’

Chapter 24

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘I want you, Aaron, Nadab, AbiUd, and seventy of IsraEl’s elders to come to Me and bow before [Me] from a distance. 2 And thereafter, I want you to come close to Me by yourself… none of the others should come any closer!’

3 So Moses went and told the people about everything God had said and about His Laws. And the people unanimously answered all together: ‘We will do and obey everything that Jehovah has said!’

4 Then Moses wrote down everything that the Lord said. And early the next morning, he built an Altar at the base of the mountain using twelve stones [to represent] the twelve tribes of IsraEl. 5 Thereafter, he sent young men from the children of IsraEl to offer up whole burnt offerings and to sacrifice young calves as peace offerings to God. 6 Thereafter, Moses took half of the blood and poured it into bowls, and he poured the other half on the Altar.

7 Next, [Moses] took the scroll of the Sacred Agreement [that he wrote] and read it to the people. And they [again] said: ‘We will do and pay attention to everything that Jehovah has said.’

8 Then Moses took the blood [from the bowls] and sprinkled it on the people, and he said: ‘{Look!} This is the blood of the Sacred Agreement that Jehovah has made with you over the things to which you’ve agreed.’

9 And thereafter, Moses, Aaron, Nadab, AbiUd, and seventy of the elders of IsraEl went up [the mountain], 10 where they saw the place that the God of IsraEl was standing; and under His feet [they saw] what looked like slabs of cut sapphires that were as pure as the skies. 11 So all the chosen ones of IsraEl stood there in the presence of God – none were missing (not one) – and they ate and drank.

12 Then Jehovah told Moses: ‘[I want you to] come [back] up the mountain to Me and stay here; for I will now give you the tablets of stone containing the Laws and Commandments that I have written.’

13 So [the next day], Moses got up and took his assistant JoShua to climb the mountain of God along with him. 14 And they told the elders: ‘Rest here until we return. Look! Aaron and Or will be here with you; so if there are any [cases] that have to be tried, let them handle it.’

15 Then Moses and JoShua climbed the mountain, which was shrouded in a cloud. 16 And the glory of The God came down on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it for six days. Then Jehovah called to Moses from the midst of the cloud on the seventh day.

17 Well, to the Children of IsraEl, the glory of Jehovah looked like a fire that was burning on top of the mountain.

18 Then Moses entered the cloud and climbed the mountain, where he stayed for forty days and forty nights.

Chapter 25

1 It was there that the Lord told Moses: 2 ‘Speak to the children of IsraEl and [ask for] the first fruits of everything that their hearts are willing to give… then you must [collect] it [and set it aside]. 3 These are the offerings that you are to ask for: gold, silver, bronze, 4 blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], fine-spun linen, goats’ hair, 5 ram’s skins that are dyed red and blue, and durable wood. 6 [You should also ask for] lamp oil, fragrances for anointing oil, ingredients for incense, 7 and for rubies and other [precious] stones that will fit into a breastplate, as well as a full-length robe.

8 ‘You must now make a Sacred Place for Me, where I can appear among you. 9 Everything you make for Me must follow the patterns that I will show you on the Mountain. There will be a pattern for the Sacred Place and patterns for all of its furnishings. And that’s how you are to make them.

10 ‘You must also build a Chest for the Proofs. [Build it] from durable wood. It must be fifty inches wide, thirty inches deep, and thirty inches tall. 11 Cover it with pure gold both inside and out, and put spun gold wreaths around it. 12 You must create four gold rings for it, and mount two rings on each side. 13 Then make [two] staves of durable wood, cover them with gold, 14 and put the staves into the rings on the sides of the Chest, to carry it. 15 These staves should always be left in the rings on the Chest. 16 Then you must put the Proofs that I will give to you inside the Chest.

17 ‘You must also make the Propitiatory. It is to be a lid of pure gold, fifty inches long and thirty inches wide. 18 And you will carve two cherubs from gold and mount them on the Propitiatory. 19 A cherub will be mounted on this side of the Propitiatory, and a cherub will be mounted on its other side, so there will be a cherub on each side. 20 The cherubs will face each other with their heads bowed toward the Propitiatory. And they must have wings that are outstretched over them that [extend forward] over the Propitiatory. 21 Then the Propitiatory must be put on top of the Chest, which will contain the Proofs that I will give to you.

22 ‘This is where I will make My presence known to you. I will speak to you from above the Propitiatory, between the two cherubs on the Chest of Proofs. It is there that I will talk to you and instruct you concerning everything that has to do with the children of IsraEl.

23 ‘You are also to make a table of pure gold that is forty inches long, twenty inches wide, and thirty inches tall. 24 It must have gold wreaths going around it and a six-inch rim 25 that has a spun wreath circling it. 26 You must also make four gold rings and fasten them to the four feet under the rim. 27 These rings will be supports for the staves that will be used to carry the table. 28 The staves should be made of durable wood and covered with pure gold, for carrying the table.

29 ‘You should also make dishes, incense burners, bowls, and cups (for drink offerings) out of pure gold. 30 These must always be set before Me on the table of Show Bread.

31 ‘You must also shape a lampstand from pure gold. The whole thing – it’s stem, branches, sockets, knobs, and lilies – must be a single piece. 32 It is to have six branches that come from its sides… three branches for lamps on one side and three branches for lamps on the other side. 33 [Each branch] that comes from the lampstand should be topped with an almond-shaped socket [to hold the lamps], which is to be mounted above a knob and a lily. 34 Each will have four sockets that are shaped like almonds, and the knobs and flowers on each branch should be the same. 35 There will be a knob under two branches and a knob under four branches that come from it, so that six branches come from the lampstand, and each will have four bowls shaped like almonds. 36 The knobs and the branches must be a single piece that is carved from a block of pure gold. 37 So there must be seven lamps that all shine from the same side.

38 ‘You must also make funnels and serving plates of pure gold. 39 They should each be made with a measurement of pure gold, 40 using the pattern that I will show you on the mountain.’

Chapter 26

1 ‘Then you must make the Tent with ten curtains of fine-spun linen, blue [thread], purple [yarn], and scarlet [cloth], with a pattern of cherubs woven into them. 2 The curtains must be forty-seven feet long and six and three-quarters feet tall. All the curtains must be the same size. 3 Five of the curtains will be joined to each other, and the other five will be closely connected to each other.

4 ‘You must put blue loops on one side of each curtain and [loops] on the other side to [join them]. 5 There should be fifty loops [on one side] and fifty loops at the same locations on the other side to connect them. 6 Then you must make fifty gold rings that will hold the curtains together so as to make it a single Tent.

7 ‘You must make a roof for the Tent using eleven sections of [goat hair cloth]. 8 Each section should be fifty feet long, six and three-quarters feet wide, and all eleven should be the same size. 9 Then connect [the cloths in strips of] fives, and attach the sixth [cloth] and fold it over the front of the Tent. 10 Then make fifty loops on the side of the [cloth] and fifty loops on the edge of the second one, where they will be joined. 11 And make fifty bronze rings and use them to connect the loops, then tie the [cloths] together to form a single piece.

12 ‘Next, connect the [eleventh cloth] to the roof of the Tent at its centerfold, and allow half of it to hang down. Also, any extra [cloth] should hang over the sides of the Tent… 13 twenty inches of [cloth] should hang over each side of the Tent to cover it. 14 Then make another covering from ram’s skins that have been dyed red and blue, and put it over the [Tent] roof.

15 ‘You must also make tent posts from durable wood. 16 Each post should be seven and three-quarters feet long and two and a half feet thick. 17 All the posts should have two joints for connections. 18 You should make twenty posts for the north side, 19 and forty silver sockets should be made to connect them, with a [base] socket for each of the posts. 20 Then make twenty posts for the south side of the Tent, 21 and forty silver sockets to connect each end of the posts. 22 And for the side of the Tent that faces west, 23 you must make six posts plus two corner posts for its backside. 24 They must all be the same and join at the same spots on each end, so all the corners are equal. 25 There are eight posts, which need sixteen silver sockets, one for each end of each post.

26 ‘And you must make rafters of durable wood. Make five for the posts on one side of the Tent, 27 five for the posts on the other side of the Tent, five for the posts in the rear, and one for the side of the Tent that faces the sea. 28 This center rafter should run between the posts lengthwise from end to end. 29 The posts should be covered with gold and fitted with gold rings to hold the rafters, and all the rafters must be covered with gold. 30 Then you must assemble the Tent according to the pattern that I will show you on the mountain.

31 ‘Thereafter, you must make a veil of spun blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and fine-spun linen that will have cherubs woven into it. 32 You must mount it on four posts of durable wood that are overlaid with gold and with gold covering each of their caps, as well as silver sockets for the base of each one. 33 Then mount the veil on the posts and carry it inside to serve as a veil for the Chest of Proofs. This veil will form the separation between the Holy Place and the Holiest of Holies. 34 Use the veil as a screen for the Chest of Proofs in the Holiest of Holies.

35 ‘Next, put a table outside of the veiled area, on the north side of the Tent, and put the lampstand opposite the table on the south side of the Tent.

36 ‘Then make a veil as a door for the Tent out of blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and embroidered fine-spun linen. 37 You must make five posts for the veil that are capped at the top and covered with gold, and bronze sockets for the base of each one.

Chapter 27

1 ‘Then you must make an Altar of durable wood that will be square, eight and a quarter feet long, eight and a quarter feet wide, and five feet high. 2 You must also create horns for each of the four corners. They will be made of a single piece and overlaid with bronze. 3 You must make a rim for the Altar and a covering, plus cups, meat hooks, a fire pan and all its utensils, from bronze. 4 You must also make a bronze meshed grating with four bronze rings, one for each of its four sides. 5 Mount the rings under the grating and center it in the middle of the Altar.

6 ‘You must also make Altar staves from durable wood that are to be overlaid with bronze. 7 Then put the staves into the rings on each side of the Altar, to carry it. 8 [The Altar] will be hollow and made from wood in a way that will be shown [to you] on the mountain.

9 ‘You must also make a courtyard for the Tent. On the south side, its curtains should be made of fine-spun linen and they will run a hundred and sixty-seven feet long. 10 They will require twenty posts and twenty bronze sockets, as well as silver rings and clasps. 11 The curtains on the north side will also run a hundred and sixty-seven feet long, with twenty posts, twenty bronze sockets, as well as the rings and the clasps for the posts. However, their sockets must be overlaid with silver. 12 The curtains on the west side of the [courtyard] must run eighty-four feet with ten posts and ten sockets. 13 And along the width of the [courtyard], on the south side, there should also be curtains that run eighty-four feet long, with ten posts and ten sockets.

14 ‘There must be a twenty-five foot [awning] on one side of the [courtyard entrance], which is to be [supported by] three posts and three sockets. 15 And on the other side, there must be an [awning] that runs twenty-five feet, with three posts and three sockets.

16 ‘The courtyard entrance must be a thirty-three-foot-high veil of blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and fine-spun embroidered linen. It should have four posts and four sockets. 17 All the courtyard posts are to be overlaid with silver, with silver caps and bronze sockets.

18 ‘So the length of the courtyard will be a hundred and sixty-three feet, its width should be eighty-two feet, and its height must be eight feet… all of fine spun linen mounted on sockets of bronze. 19 And all the furnishings, instruments, and pins for the courtyard are [to be made of] bronze.

20 ‘Now, give instructions to the children of IsraEl and have them bring you pure, refined olive oil that has been beaten for burning in a lamp, so the lamps may be kept burning continually 21 inside the Tent of Proofs, but outside of the veil that hides the Chest of the Sacred Agreement. Aaron and his sons must keep them burning all night long before Jehovah. This is the rule that must be followed through all generations of the children of IsraEl.’

Chapter 28

1 ‘Now, I want you to choose your brother Aaron and his sons Nadab, AbiUd, EliEzer, and IthaMar, who are all children of IsraEl, to be My servants. 2 You must make holy clothing for your brother Aaron, to honor and glorify [him]. 3 So, talk to all the wise and understanding [people] that I have filled with the spirit of wisdom and comprehension, and have them make holy clothing for Aaron to wear in the Holy Place, where he will serve as a Priest to Me. 4 These are the clothes that they must make:
Š A breastplate
Š A shoulder piece
Š A full-length robe
Š A fringed tunic
Š A turban
Š A sash.
These are to be holy garments for Aaron and his sons to serve Me as Priests.

5 ‘They must take gold and fine-spun linen with blue [thread], purple [yarn], and scarlet [cloth], 6 and embroider them [to serve as] the shoulder pieces. 7 Both shoulder pieces must be joined together and fastened on each side. 8 They should be woven as a single piece of pure gold with blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and fine-spun linen.

9 ‘Then you must take two large emeralds and engrave the names of IsraEl’s sons on them, 10 with six names on the first stone and the other six names on the second stone, in the order of their births. 11 It must be done artistically by a stone engraver in raised letters like a seal, for each of the names of the children of IsraEl. 12 Then mount these stones on each of the shoulder pieces. They are to be memorial stones of the children of IsraEl. Therefore, Aaron will wear the names of the children of IsraEl before Jehovah on his shoulders, in memory of them.

13 ‘Then you must make [two] small rings of pure gold, 14 and two fringes mixed with flowers and wreaths of pure gold. Mount the wreathed fringes on the small rings and fasten them to the front of the shoulder pieces.

15 ‘Then you must make The Word of Judgment. It is to be embroidered; and to keep the theme of the rest of the sacred clothing, you should make it of gold, blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and fine-spun linen. 16 Make it square, nine inches long and nine inches wide, and doubled. 17 Then, four columns of stones should be woven into it. The first column will have a ruby, a topaz, and an emerald. 18 The second column will have a carbuncle, a sapphire, and a jasper. 19 The third column will have a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst. 20 And the fourth column will have a peridot, a beryl, and an onyx. All should be mounted in gold settings with gold clasps. Make sure they’re assembled in that order. 21 Then each stone must be engraved like a seal with the name of [one of] the twelve children of IsraEl in his order.

22 ‘The Word of Judgment must also have woven fringed chains of pure gold. 23 Make two gold rings for it and place them on either side of the Word. 24 And along the border, connect the chains to the rings on each side of the Word. 25 Then on each side of the two borders, you must place the wreaths. Place them on the sides of the shoulder piece, opposite each other and toward the front. 26 Thereafter, make two more gold rings and place them on the tips of the Word on the back side and within the shoulder pieces. 27 Also, make two more gold rings, place them on the shoulder pieces on their bottom edges toward the front, to serve as couplings above the woven portions of the shoulder pieces. 28 Then secure the Word by its gold rings that are sewed to the blue work to the gold rings on the shoulder pieces, so that it is held tightly to the woven work on the shoulder pieces above it.

29 ‘Thereafter, Aaron must wear the names of the sons of IsraEl on the Word of Judgment whenever he enters the Holy Place, as a reminder before God. 30 And you must place the Revelation and the Truth over The Word of Judgment, which Aaron will wear into the Holy Place whenever he goes before Jehovah. So, Aaron will always bear the judgments of the sons of IsraEl on his chest whenever he goes before Jehovah.

31 And you are also to make an undergarment [for him] that is entirely blue and reaches to his feet. 32 The middle portion is to be a woven work that is coupled to the rest so it can’t be torn; 33 then along the bottom hem, there are to be blossoming pomegranates all around that are woven from blue [thread], purple [yarn], scarlet [cloth], and fine-spun linen, surrounded by pomegranates and bells of gold in between. 34 And between the gold pomegranates, there are to be bells and a flowered work along the hem. 35 [These bells] will ring whenever Aaron enters and leaves to officiate before Jehovah, so he doesn’t die.

36 ‘You must also make a plate of pure gold, into which you must carve the impression, Holy to Jehovah. 37 It is to be fastened to the front of the turban with blue yarn 38 and worn upon Aaron’s forehead, so he can lift away the sins of the holy things that the sons of IsraEl offer as holy gifts. It must always be there on Aaron’s head whenever he accepts their gifts.

39 ‘The fringes on the undergarments must be made of linen, and you must make a turban of fine linen, as well as a sash of embroidered work. 40 You are also to make undergarments, turbans, and sashes for Aaron’s sons, so that they may be honored and glorified. 41 You must put them upon your brother Aaron and his sons, then anoint them and empower their hands. Make them Holy, so that they can officiate as Priests before Me.

42 ‘You must also make linen pants for them (to cover the indecency of their flesh) that run from their loins to their thighs. 43 Aaron and his sons must wear them whenever they enter the Tent of Proofs and whenever they serve at the Altar of the Holy Place, so they don’t bring sin upon themselves and die. This is the rule for him and his seed through the ages.’

Chapter 29

1 ‘These are the things that you must do to them to make [Aaron and his sons] holy, so they can serve Me as Priests: Take one young calf from the herd and two perfect rams. 2 Then make some fermentation-free bread with the finest wheat flour that has been kneaded with oil, and some fermentation-free round cakes with oil poured over them. 3 Then put them into a basket to be offered along with the young calf and the two rams.

4 ‘Then bring Aaron and his sons to the entrance of the Tent of Proofs and wash them with water. 5 Thereafter, get the [sacred] garments and dress your brother Aaron with the full-length robe, the chest covering, and the Word (of Judgment), and tie the Word to the chest covering. 6 Then put the turban on his head and mount the plate of Holiness on the turban, 7 and thereafter take the anointing oil and anoint him by pouring it over his head. 8 Then bring his sons in and dress them… 9 wrap them with sashes and put on their turbans to create a Priesthood for Me through the ages.

‘After that, you must empower Aaron and his sons. 10 Bring the calf to the entrance of the Tent of Proofs and have Aaron and his sons lay their hands upon the calf’s head before Jehovah. 11 Then you must slaughter the calf before Jehovah there at the entrance to the Tent of Proofs. 12 Take the calf’s blood and wipe it on the horns of the Altar with your finger, and pour the rest of the blood out at the base of the Altar. 13 Then take all its belly fat, its liver and kidneys, along with any fat that’s on them, and [burn] them on the Altar. 14 However, the calf’s flesh, skin, and manure must be burned outside of the camp as an [offering] for sins.

15 ‘Next, take one of the rams, and have Aaron and his sons lay their hands on its head, 16 and slaughter it. Collect the blood and pour it on and around the Altar, 17 then cut the ram into several pieces and wash the insides and the feet with water, and set the pieces and the head aside. 18 Then you must put the whole ram on the Altar as a burnt offering and a sweet-smelling delight to Jehovah. It will be like incense to Jehovah.

19 ‘Then take the second ram, and have Aaron and his sons lay their hands on its head; 20 you must slaughter it and collect the blood, and touch a little of the blood to the tip of Aaron’s right ear, to the thumb of his right hand, and to the big toe of his right foot. [Then touch some of it to] the tips of his sons’ right ears, the thumbs of their right hands, and the big toes of their right feet. 21 Then take some of the blood from the Altar and [mix it with] anointing oil, and sprinkle it on Aaron and on his clothes, as well as on his sons and on his sons’ clothes. This will purify him and his clothing, and his sons and their clothing. Then pour the rest of the blood out around the Altar.

22 ‘After that, [set aside] all of the ram’s fat, including the belly fat, the liver and kidneys and any fat on them, and the right shoulder, to complete [the ceremony]. 23 And take one of the round cakes [that have been covered] with oil and one loaf from the basket of fermentation-free bread, and set them before Jehovah. 24 Then give the rest to Aaron and his sons. But the [loaf and the round cake] must be offered separately to Jehovah. 25 Take them from the hands of the Priests and put them on the Altar, then burn them as offerings of sweet-smelling delights to Jehovah.

26 ‘Then you must remove the ram’s breast at the end of ceremony for Aaron. It is to be offered before Jehovah… and [the rest] must be shared with you. 27 You must cut up the breast and the shoulder that was removed from the last lamb and give it to Aaron and his sons. 28 This will be a requirement for the children of IsraEl and for Aaron and his sons through the ages. This is to be a separate and special offering to Jehovah from the children of IsraEl, as one of their peace offerings.

29 ‘The clothing that Aaron wears inside the Holy Place must thereafter be passed on to his [future generations, after he dies], so his [descendants] can be anointed in them and empowered when they wear them. 30 The Priests among his descendants that succeed him and who enter the Tent of Proofs to serve in the Most Holy, must wear them for seven days.

31 ‘You must then boil the flesh of the last lamb in the Holy Place, 32 and Aaron and his sons will eat the ram’s flesh with the loaves [of bread] in the basket, next to the Tent of Proofs. 33 They will eat the offerings that were used to make them holy and to empower them. They can’t be eaten by anyone else, because these things are holy. 34 And if the sacrificed flesh of the final sacrificial lamb and the bread should be left until the next morning, it must all be burned, not eaten, because it is something that is holy.

35 ‘You must always do this for Aaron and his sons, just as I’ve told you. The empowerment will take seven days. 36 You must sacrifice the calf for the sin offering on the cleaning day, and then you will clean the Altar where you will sacrifice the last lamb, and anoint it to make it holy. 37 The Altar must be cleaned and made holy for each of the seven days, because the Altar is very holy, and anyone who touches it must also be holy.

38 ‘These are the sacrifices that you must offer on the Altar: Two perfect yearling lambs must be offered each day, 39 one in the morning and the other in the evening. 40 And each lamb should be offered along with three quarts of fine flour that has been mixed with a quart of [olive] oil and with a quart of wine as a drink offering. 41 You must offer the same things with the second lamb [that is sacrificed] in the evening (which includes the drink offering) as a sweet-smelling delight to Jehovah. 42 This sacrifice is to be offered before Jehovah by all your generations through the ages at the entrance to the Tent of Proofs. That’s where I will be made known to you and where I will speak to you from now on. 43 This is where I will instruct the children of IsraEl, and where I will be treated as holy in My glory.

44 ‘I will make the Tent of Proofs and its Altar holy, and I will make Aaron and his sons holy, so they can serve Me as Priests. 45 Here the children of IsraEl will call to Me, and I will be their God. 46 Then they will know that I am Jehovah, the God who brought them out of the land of Egypt, so they can call on Me and I can be their God.’

Chapter 30

1 ‘You must also make an incense Altar from durable wood. 2 It should be twenty inches long, twenty inches wide, and forty inches tall; and it should have horns that are made from a single piece [of wood]. 3 Its grating, all its sides, and its horns must be covered with pure gold. It should have wreathed edges of gold all around, 4 and under the wreathes you must put two rings of pure gold on each side, to serve as supports for the staves that you will use to carry it. 5 The staves must be made from durable wood and covered with gold.

6 ‘Then place [the incense Altar] in front of the veil that [hides] the Chest of Proofs where I will make My presence known to you. 7 Aaron must burn a fine compound of incense on [this Altar] each morning, after he snuffs the lamps. 8 And when Aaron lights the lamps in the evening, he must burn incense on it again. So, incense will be offered continuously before Jehovah throughout your generations. 9 You must not offer a different type of incense on it, set any fires on it, offer any sacrifices on it, or pour drink offerings on it. 10 And at the same time each year, Aaron must offer the reconciliation for their generations on its horns with the blood of purification, because it is very holy to Jehovah.’

11 Then the Lord told Moses: 12 ‘I want you to take a census of the children of IsraEl, and each [person] must pay Jehovah a ransom for his life, so no one will be destroyed when they are visited. 13 This is what everyone who is surveyed must give: half a double-silver coin (or twenty copper coins), which is to be used for the Holy Place as an offering to Jehovah. 14 Everyone from twenty years old and up who answers to the census must pay this offering to Jehovah. 15 The rich won’t pay any more, and the poor won’t pay any less than the half double-silver coin that they must offer to reconcile their lives with Jehovah. 16 Then you must take the money that the children of IsraEl pay and use it for the services at the Tent of Proofs. The children of IsraEl must always remember to do this, so as to reconcile their lives [with Jehovah].’

17 And the Lord spoke to Moses, and said: 18 ‘You must make a bronze bowl with a bronze base for washing. It must be put between the Tent of Proofs and the Altar, and you must fill it with water. 19 Then Aaron and his sons must use the water to wash their hands and feet. 20 For whenever they enter the Tent of Proofs, they must wash themselves with the water, so they won’t die. And they must do [the same] whenever they go to the Altar for services or to burn sacrifices to Jehovah. 21 In addition, they must wash their hands and feet in the water whenever they enter the Tent of Proofs, so they don’t die. This is the rule for him and his descendants through the ages.’

22 Then the Lord told Moses, 23 ‘You must also gather these sweet-smelling items for the Holy Place: sixteen pounds of choice myrrh flowers, eight pounds of sweet-smelling cinnamon, eight pounds of sweet-smelling calamus, 24 sixteen pounds of cassia, and a gallon of olive oil. 25 This must then be professionally formulated to make a perfumed holy anointing oil that is to be used for sacred purposes. 26 Then you must use it to anoint the Tent of Proofs, the Chest inside the Tent of Proofs 27 and all of its furnishings, as well as the lampstand and its furnishings, the incense Altar, 28 the Altar of whole burnt-offerings and all its furnishings, the table and all its furnishings, and the wash basin. 29 You must cleanse them and make them extremely holy… and then everyone who touches them will become holy. 30 Thereafter, you must anoint Aaron and his sons and cleanse them, so they can serve Me as Priests.

31 ‘Then say to the children of IsraEl: This will be your holy anointing oil throughout all your generations. 32 It should never be poured on a man’s skin, and no one should make any of this for himself using the same formula, because it is holy, and it should be [treated as] holy by you. 33 So if anyone makes anything like it and gives it to a stranger, he must be destroyed from among his people.

34 ‘Also, gather these sweet-smelling substances: sweet myrrh oil, snail shells, sweet galbanum, and transparent frankincense. They are to be combined in equal measures 35 in a professional way, to make perfumed incense that will be pure and holy. 36 It must all be beaten into a fine powder and put in front of the Proofs inside the Tent of Proofs, where I will make My presence known to you. It must be treated as a most-holy incense by you, 37 so you shouldn’t make any for yourselves by this formula, because it is something holy to Jehovah. 38 Whoever makes anything like it so they can smell it must be destroyed from among his people.

Chapter 31

1 Then the Lord told Moses: 2 ‘{Look!} I have called on BeSeleEl (the son of Urias and the grandson of Or of the tribe of Judah) 3 and I have filled him with the Breath of God and with the wisdom, understanding and knowledge to be creative in all fields. 4 [He understands] carpentry and how to work with gold, silver, and bronze; [how to work with] blue thread, purple yarn and spun scarlet material, as well as 5 how to do stone working and wood crafting… how to do everything. 6 So I have chosen him, as well as EliAb (the son of AchiSamach of the tribe of Dan) and anyone else into whose heart I have put talent, to make everything that I’ve talked to you about. 7 [This includes] the Tent of Proofs, the Chest of the Sacred Agreement and the Propitiatory that sits on top of it, all the furnishings of the Tent, 8 the Altars, the table and its furnishings, 9 the pure lampstand and its furnishings, the wash bowl and its base, 10 Aaron’s official garments and the garments for his sons to serve Me as Priests, 11 the anointing oil, and the incense for the Holy Place. They will make these things just the way I’ve told you.’

12 And the Lord said to Moses: 13 ‘Also tell the children of IsraEl that they must pay attention and keep My Sabbaths, because these are the sign between us through the generations that they know that I am the Lord who makes them holy. 14 They must guard the Sabbaths as something that is holy to them. So, anyone who dishonors them must be put to death, and anyone who works on [those days] must have their lives destroyed from the midst of their people. 15 They may work for six days, but the seventh day is the Sabbath… a holy [day of] rest to Jehovah, and anyone who works on the seventh day must be put to death. 16 The children of IsraEl must keep the Sabbaths and obey them throughout their generations, 17 for this is to be an Agreement through the ages between the children of IsraEl and Me. It is their sign to Me through the ages, because Jehovah made the skies and the lands in six days, and He stopped and rested on the seventh day.’

18 Well at that, after He finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, and He gave Moses the two Tablets of Proofs, which were made of stone and had been inscribed by the finger of God.

Chapter 32

1 [Well, after a long time had passed] and the people saw that Moses hadn’t returned from the Mountain, they went to Aaron and said: ‘[We want you to] make gods for us to lead us, because we don’t know what has become of this Moses who brought us out of the land of Egypt.’

2 So Aaron told them: ‘I want you to take all the gold earrings that your wives and daughters wear in their ears, and bring them to me.’

3 Then everyone took off their gold earrings and brought them to Aaron, 4 and he took them from their hands, [had] them melted, and then the gold was carved into [the shape of] a calf. And he said: ‘O IsraEl; this is your God who carried you out of the land of Egypt.’

5 And after he saw it, Aaron had an altar built next to it. Then Aaron proclaimed, ‘Tomorrow [we will hold] a feast to the Lord.’

6 So he got up early the next morning and he offered whole burnt sacrifices and a peace offering [upon the altar]. Then the people sat down to eat and drink, and thereafter they got up to play.

7 Well at that, the Lord told Moses: ‘Hurry and go down [the mountain], because the people whom you brought out of the land of Egypt are acting lawlessly! 8 Notice how quickly they have left the ways that you’ve shown them… for now they’ve made themselves a calf to worship, and they’ve even offered sacrifices to it, saying, 9 O IsraEl, this is your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt. 10 So leave Me now, for I’m so angry with them that I will reject them and make a great nation of you!’

11 But Moses started begging the Lord. He said: ‘O Jehovah; why are you so angry with the people that You brought out of the land of Egypt with Your mighty arm and with so much power? 12 Don’t allow the Egyptians to say, He wickedly took them away to kill them in the Mountains and to wipe them off of the land. Hold back Your rage and show mercy on the sins of Your people. 13 Remember Your servants AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob, and the [oath] that You made to them when You swore by Your Name, saying, I will cause your seed to increase so much that [they will become] like the stars in the skies. And [remember the promise that You made] to give them all of this land as theirs through the ages.’

14 Well, that’s how Jehovah was moved to [keep them] as His people.

15 Then Moses turned and went down the Mountain carrying the two Tablets of Proofs in his hands. They were tablets of stone that were inscribed on both sides, 16 and they were the works and writings of God.

17 Well when JoShua heard the voices of people shouting, he said to Moses: ‘That’s the sound of a war in the camp!’

18 But [Moses] replied: ‘It isn’t the sound of people going to battle or the sound of defeat. What I hear is the sound of a lot of [partying].’

19 And when he got close to the camp, he saw the calf and the dancing, and Moses became so angry that he threw the two tablets from his hands and broke them to pieces at the base of the Mountain. 20 Then he took the calf that they’d made and had it melted and ground into dust, and he put it into some water and made the children of IsraEl drink it.

21 Then Moses asked Aaron: ‘What have these people done to you? Why have you made them [guilty of] such a great sin?’

22 And Aaron replied: ‘Don’t be angry, lord. For you know how troublesome these people are. 23 They told me, [We want you to] make gods for us to lead us, because we don’t know what has become of this Moses who brought us out of the land of Egypt. 24 So I said, If anyone has gold ornaments, take them off. Then they gave them to me and I threw them into the fire, and out came this calf!’

25 Well, Moses realized that the people were divided, and Aaron was responsible… which was something that would make their enemies very happy. 26 So Moses went to the entrance of the camp and shouted: ‘Who is on Jehovah’s side? [May those who are], come here to me!’

Well, all the sons of Levi came to him, 27 and he told them, ‘This is what Jehovah, the God of IsraEl, has declared: Everyone must [tie on] his sword and go through the camp from gate to gate, and each of you must kill [your rebellious] brothers and neighbors, starting with those who are the nearest to you!’

28 So the sons of Levi did just as Moses had told them, and three thousand people fell that day. 29 Then Moses said: ‘You are to be praised, because you’ve all raised your hands before Jehovah [and struck down] your own sons and your own brothers!’

30 Then the next morning, Moses spoke to the people and said: ‘You have committed a great sin! So now I must go up to God and pay for your sins!’

31 Therefore, Moses returned to Jehovah and said: ‘I’ve [come to] beg You, O Jehovah; because these people are guilty of a great sin by making a god of gold. 32 So now, [please] forgive their sins. But if You choose not to; then also erase my name from the scroll that You’ve written.’

33 But the Lord told Moses: ‘I’m going to erase [the names] from My scroll of all those who have sinned against Me!

34 ‘Now, go and lead these people to the place that I told you about when I said, {Look!} My messenger will travel before you. However, I’m also going to visit them and [punish] them for their sins.’

35 So thereafter, Jehovah struck the people for having Aaron make the calf.

Chapter 33

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Go on! You and the people that you brought out of the land of Egypt must leave now and go to the land that I promised to AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob, when I said, I will give this [land] to your seed. 2 For I will send My messenger ahead of you, and he will throw out the Amorites, Chettites, Pherezites, Gergeshites, Evites, Jebusites, and CanaAnites, 3 then I will bring you into a land that flows with milk and honey. However, I won’t be going with you, for fear that I will destroy you along the way, because you’re such a stubborn people!’

4 Well when the people heard this bad news, they went into mourning and dressed themselves mourning clothes. 5 But the Lord told the children of IsraEl: ‘You are a stubborn people! Now, pay attention, so I don’t send another plague to destroy you. Take off your [mourning] clothes and their trappings, and let Me show you what I will do for you.’

6 So the Sons of IsraEl took off all their [mourning] gear there at the dry mountain (Horeb). 7 Then Moses carried the [materials for] the Tent (which they called it the Tent of Proofs) outside of the camp and [had it] assembled some distance away, so that everyone who [wanted an answer from Jehovah] would have to go outside the camp to the Tent. 8 Then whenever Moses would enter or leave the Tent, everyone would stand and watch at its entrance, to see what would happen. 9 For when Moses entered the Tent, a column of clouds descended and stayed at the Tent’s entrance while [God] was speaking to Moses. 10 And as they all watched the column of clouds at the entrance to the Tent, everyone stood there and prayed 11 as Jehovah spoke to Moses face to face as though they were two friends. Then after that, [Moses] would return to the camp, but his servant JoShua (the son of NaWeh), who was a young man, didn’t leave the Tent.

12 Thereafter, Moses said to Jehovah: ‘{Look!} You told me to lead these people on, but You haven’t shown me where You want me to go yet.

‘You’ve also told me that You know me better than all the rest, and that You care for me. 13 So now, if I’ve found favor in Your eyes, show Yourself to me so I can see You. Then I will know that I’ve found favor in Your eyes, and I can be sure that this great nation is truly Your people.’

14 And [God] replied: ‘I will pass before you, to satisfy you.’

15 Then [Moses] said: ‘But if You aren’t going to [travel] with us, don’t make me go either! 16 For, how would anyone know for sure that these people and I have found favor with You, unless You go with us? [But if You should choose to go], both Your people and I will be glorified above all the nations of the earth.’

17 And the Lord told Moses: ‘I will do this thing that you’ve asked, because you’ve found My favor and I’ve put you above all the rest.’

18 Then [Moses] said: ‘Then, show Yourself to me!’

19 And [God] said: ‘I will pass before you with My glory, and I will call out My Name (Jehovah) in front of you as I say, I will be merciful to those for whom I feel mercy, and I will have pity on those for whom I feel pity.’

20 Then [God] told [Moses]: ‘You won’t be able to see My face, because no man can see My face and live.’ 21 And the Lord said: ‘{Look!} Stand by Me on that rock [over there]; 22 and as My glory is passing by, I will put you into a hole in that rock and cover you with My hand as I pass. 23 Then I will remove My hand, so you can see My backside… but you won’t be able to see My face.’

Chapter 34

1 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Now, you must cut two tablets of stone like the first ones, and climb the mountain to Me; then I will write the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. 2 So, be ready to climb Mount Sinai in the morning, and then stand there [and wait] for Me at the top of the Mountain. 3 Don’t allow anyone to go up with you or even to be seen on the Mountain. And don’t allow any sheep or bulls to graze near the Mountain.’

4 So [Moses] cut two stone tablets just like the first, and he got up early and climbed Mount Sinai, just as the Lord had told him, carrying the two stone tablets. 5 Then the Lord descended in a cloud and stood close to him, as He called out the Name, Jehovah. 6 And the Lord passed before his face while He was saying, ‘Jehovah, the God of mercy, pity, patience, concern, and truth 7 who brings justice and mercy to thousands, and removes wrong-doing, unrighteousness, and sins, but who won’t acquit the guilty. He’s the One who [punishes] the sins of ancestors on their children and on their children’s children to the third and fourth generations.’

8 Then Moses quickly bowed to the earth and prayed: 9 ‘If You care for me; may my Lord go with us, because these people are stubborn. Then You will remove our sins and our failings, and we will be Your people.’

10 And thereafter, the Lord said to Moses: ‘{Look!} I am establishing a Sacred Agreement with you in the presence of all your people. I will do wonderful things that have never been done before anywhere on the earth or in any nation. Everyone among you will see the deeds that I will do for you… for they are wonderful. 11 But make sure that you do everything that I’ve told you to do. Then {Look!} I will throw the Amorites, CanaAnites, Pherezites, Chettites, Evites, Gergeshites, and Jebusites out from before you.

12 ‘Be careful not to make any agreements with the people who live in the land that you are entering, for fear that they will become stones to stumble you. 13 You must destroy their altars and smash their [sacred] columns, cut off their water, and burn the images of their gods. 14 You must not worship other gods, because Jehovah (which is a zealous Name) is a zealous God.

15 ‘Never make pacts with people who live in this land and then commit adultery with their gods, or sacrifice to their gods, or have them call you to eat at their feasts. 16 You shouldn’t take their daughters as women for your sons, nor should you give your daughters to their sons, so your sons and daughters don’t become adulterers with their gods.

17 ‘You aren’t to mold [any images of] gods for yourselves.

18 ‘You must keep the Feast of Fermentation-Free Bread and eat fermentation-free bread for seven days, just as I’ve told you, in the month and season of new grain… because, that’s when you came out of Egypt.

19 ‘All the first-born males are Mine… yes, everything that opens the womb first, including all your first-born oxen and sheep. 20 But when it comes to the first-born of burros; you must pay a ransom for them using a sheep or with money. You must also pay a ransom for your first-born sons… don’t come to Me empty-handed!

21 ‘You can work for six days, but you must rest on the seventh day, whether it’s during the seed-time or the harvest.

22 ‘You must also observe the Feast of Weeks for Me at the beginning of the wheat harvest and at the harvest in the middle of the year. 23 So, every male must appear before Jehovah the God of IsraEl three times each year. 24 For after I’ve driven the nations away from before you and enlarged your borders, no one will want your land… that is, as long as you go up to appear before Jehovah your God three times each year.

25 ‘You must not offer the blood of My sacrifices with any fermentation, nor should the Passover sacrifices remain until the next morning.

26 ‘The first fruits of your land must be taken to the House of your God Jehovah.

‘You must not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.’

27 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Write all of these words down, because they are the words of My Sacred Agreement with you and with IsraEl.’

28 Well, Moses was there [on the mountain] with Jehovah for forty days and forty nights; and during that entire time, he didn’t eat any bread or drink any water. Then He wrote the words of the Sacred Agreement (the Ten Commandments) on the tablets. 29 So when Moses came down the Mountain, he had the two tablets in his hands. But as he was coming down, he didn’t realize that his face was glowing because of his conversation with God. 30 And when Aaron and all the elders of IsraEl saw Moses’ face radiating, they were afraid to come any closer. 31 But when Moses called to them, Aaron and all the heads of the gathering turned toward him, as he started speaking to them.

32 And after that, all the children of IsraEl also came to him, and he told them all the Commandments that Jehovah had given to him on Mount Sinai (Horeb). 33 Then, after he had finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face. 34 However, whenever Moses went in to speak to Jehovah, he would remove the veil until he [came back outside] to tell the children of IsraEl what the Lord had said to him. 35 [Of course], it was because the children of IsraEl could see Moses’ face radiating that he wore the veil over it after going in to speak to the Lord.

Chapter 35

1 After that, Moses assembled the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl and said, ‘These are the commandments that Jehovah has told you to obey: 2 You can work for six days, but the seventh day is for resting. It is a holy Sabbath and a rest for Jehovah. So, anyone who does work on [that day] must die. 3 You may not so much as light a fire in any of your homes on the Sabbath day; for I am Jehovah.’

4 Then Moses told the gathering of the children of IsraEl, ‘This is what Jehovah has instructed you to do: 5 Take up [a collection] as an offering to Jehovah, and everyone whose heart moves him to do so must bring these as first-fruits to Jehovah: gold, silver, bronze, 6 blue [thread], purple [yarn], double-spun scarlet [cloth], fine-spun linen, goats’ hair, 7 ram’s skins that have been dyed red or blue, durable wood, 8 rubies and gemstones that can be engraved for the [Priest’s] shoulder-piece, and full-length robes.

9 ‘Then, any man among you who is wise at heart may come and create the things that Jehovah has commanded, such as 10 the Tent, the cords, the coverings, the rings, the rafters, the posts, 11 the Chest of Proofs and its staves, the Propitiatory, the veil, 12 the curtains for the courtyard and their posts, 13 the [engraved gemstones], 14 the incense, the anointing oil, 15 the table and all its furnishings, 16 the lampstand (for lighting) and all of its furnishings, 17 the Altar and all of its furnishings, 18 and the holy garments for the Priesthood of Aaron (the clothing that he must use in his services), 19 as well as the Priestly garments for Aaron’s sons.’

20 And after the gathering of the children of IsraEl [had finished listening to] Moses, all who felt moved to do so brought whatever they thought would be appropriate as offerings. 21 So they donated (as offerings to Jehovah) everything that was needed for the Tent of Proofs and all of its services, as well as all the clothing for the Holy Place. 22 Then, any man who felt moved to do so brought items from their wives, such as

From the Greek Septuagint text as was used by First Century Christians.
Written by Moses about 1549-BCE (according to our calculations) after the construction of the Tent of Proofs in the desert.

Chapter 1

1 These are the names of the Sons of IsraEl that came to Egypt with their father Jacob and their families: 2 ReuBen, SimeOn, Levi, Judah, 3 IshSachar, ZebuLun, BenJamin, 4 Dan, NaphTali, Gad, and Asher. 5 Then [there was] JoSeph [who lived] in Egypt; so altogether, there were seventy-five of these people who [descended] from Jacob.

6 [In time], JoSeph, his brothers, and that entire generation died. 7 But the children of IsraEl grew and multiplied into a large and strong [nation], and the land helped them to grow.

8 Then a new king became the ruler over Egypt who didn’t know JoSeph (possibly SobeKemsaf I). 9 And he said to his nation: ‘{Look!} The children of IsraEl have [grown tremendously] and they’re now more powerful than we are. 10 So let’s be smooth in the way we deal with them, because if they continue to grow and then we find ourselves at war, they could side with our enemies. And after they beat us in war, they will leave our land!’

11 So he appointed [governors] over them, whose [job] was to make them do hard labor; and they built fortified cities for Pharaoh, including Pithom, RaMesse, and On (the City of the Sun). 12 But the more they held [the IsraElites] down, the faster they grew.

Well, they multiplied so much and grew so strong that the Egyptians hated the children of IsraEl. 13 So the Egyptians became tyrants over IsraEl 14 and made their lives unbearable by forcing them to work hard making bricks from clay and working in the fields… whatever needed to be done. And they were dealt with violently.

15 Then the king of Egypt told the midwives who [served] the Hebrews (one was SepPhora and the other was Poua): 16 ‘When you serve as midwives to the Hebrew women and they’re about to give birth, kill [the baby] if it’s a boy, but leave it alone if it’s a girl.’

17 However, the midwives feared God and wouldn’t do what the king of Egypt told them… they allowed the male [babies] to live. 18 So the king of Egypt called for the midwives and asked them: ‘Why haven’t you [killed] the male [babies]?’

19 And the midwives answered Pharaoh, saying: ‘Hebrew women aren’t like the women of Egypt, because they give birth before the midwives arrive, so they [already] have their children!’

20 As the result, God dealt kindly with the midwives, while the [IsraElites] continued to multiply and grow very strong. 21 And these midwives who feared God were able to start families.

22 Then Pharaoh told all his people: ‘Whenever a male is born to the Hebrews, you must throw it into the river… but let the females live.’

Chapter 2

1 Now, there was a certain man of the tribe of Levi who married one of the daughters of [his tribe]. 2 Then she got pregnant and gave birth to a male child. And when she saw how beautiful the child was, they hid him for three months. 3 But when they could no longer hide him, his mother got a box for him and coated it with tar, put the child inside, then she set it in the mud by the river, 4 and she had his sister keep watch in the distance to see what would happen to him.

5 Well, Pharaoh’s daughter thereafter came down to the river to bathe. And as her handmaids were walking along by the river, they saw the box lying in the mud, so she sent a handmaid out to pick it up. 6 And when she opened it, she found the baby inside the box, crying. Well, Pharaoh’s daughter felt sorry for it and said, ‘This is a Hebrew child.’

7 Then [the baby’s] sister went up and asked Pharaoh’s daughter: ‘Would you like me to call a Hebrew [woman] to nurse the child for you?’

8 And Pharaoh’s daughter replied, ‘Go!’

So the young woman went and called [her] mother.

9 Then Pharaoh’s daughter said to [the mother]: ‘Take care of this child and nurse it for me, and I’ll pay you.’

So the woman took the child and nursed it. 10 And after the boy had grown, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter and he became her son. [Pharaoh’s daughter] named him Moses (Egyptian: Mo-sheh, or, to draw), because she said, ‘I drew him from the water.’

11 In time, after Moses had grown, he went to see his brothers, the sons of IsraEl. And as he was observing how bad things were, he noticed an Egyptian beating one of his Hebrew brothers of the children of IsraEl. 12 Then he looked around and he didn’t see anyone, so he bludgeoned the Egyptian and buried [his body] in the sand.

13 Well on the next day, he noticed two Hebrew men fighting, and he asked the bully, ‘Why are you beating your neighbor?’

14 And he replied: ‘Who appointed you to be our ruler and judge? Are you going to kill me like you killed that Egyptian yesterday?’

This stunned Moses, and he thought: ‘If [he knows], then others will know.’ 15 And when Pharaoh found out about it, he tried to have Moses put to death. So Moses withdrew from the face of Pharaoh and went to live in the land of Midian.

Then, upon arriving in the land of Midian, he sat down next to a well. 16 And nearby, the seven daughters of the Priest of Midian happened to be grazing their father’s sheep. Then when they came [to the well] to fill their buckets to water the flock, 17 some shepherds arrived and [tried to] chase them away. However, Moses stood up and protected them. And thereafter, he drew water for them and watered their sheep.

18 Well, after they returned to their home, their father (RagouEl) asked them, ‘Why have you returned so quickly today?’

19 And they replied: ‘An Egyptian protected us from the shepherds; and then he drew water for us and watered our sheep.’

20 So [RaguEl] asked his daughters: ‘Where is he… why did you leave the man? Invite him over [for a meal].’

21 Well [after that], Moses developed a good relationship with the man, and [RaguEl] gave his daughter SepPhoran to be Moses’ woman. 22 Then she got pregnant and gave birth to a son, whom Moses named Gersam (Visitor); for he said, ‘I’m a visitor in a strange land.’

23 After a while, the king of Egypt died. But the children of IsraEl kept groaning and crying because of their hard work. And the cries over their labor ascended to God. 24 [He] heard their groaning and God remembered the Sacred Agreement He had made with AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob. 25 So He [started paying attention] to the children of IsraEl, and He made Himself known to them.

Chapter 3

1 It was while Moses was out tending the flock of his father-in-law (His Excellence, the Priest of Midian) that he’d led the sheep into the desert to the dry mountain (Horeb). 2 And there, Jehovah’s messenger appeared to him in a flame that was burning in a bush. He saw the flames in the bush, but [the bush] wasn’t really burning. 3 And Moses said, ‘I’ll get closer, so I can see this great sight… to see why the bush isn’t being burned!’

4 And when [God] saw him drawing closer to look, the Lord called to him from the bush. He said: ‘Moses! Moses!’

And [Moses] asked: ‘What is it?’

5 And He said: ‘Don’t come any closer. Take your sandals off, because you’re standing on holy ground.’

6 Then He said: ‘I am the God of your ancestors… the God of AbraHam, the God of IsaAc, and the God of Jacob.’

Well at that, Moses turned his face away, because he was afraid to look at God.

7 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘I’ve seen the hardships that My people are enduring in Egypt, and I’ve heard their cries about their task-masters, so I know what they’re going through. 8 Now, I’ve come down here to free them from the Egyptians and to take them away from that land, to a land that is good and has plenty of room… a land that is flowing with milk and honey. It’s the place where the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Pherezites, Gergeshites, Evites, and Jebusites [live]. 9 For {Look!} the shouting of the children of IsraEl has now reached to Me, and I’ve seen the suffering that the Egyptians are bringing upon them. 10 So now, come; because I’m going to send you to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, and you’re going to bring My people (the children of IsraEl) out of the land of Egypt.’

11 But Moses asked God: ‘Just who am I that I should go to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and bring the children of IsraEl out that land?’

12 And God replied: ‘I will be with you! This [place] will serve as the sign that I am sending you. Then when you bring My people out of Egypt, you must serve God on this mountain.’

13 But Moses said to God: ‘Look, I’ll go to the children of IsraEl and tell them, The God of our ancestors has sent me to you. But they’re going to ask, What is His Name? So, what should I tell them?’

14 And God told Moses: ‘I am The Being!… just tell the children of IsraEl that The Being has sent you.’

15 Then God said to Moses: ‘Tell the Sons of IsraEl that Jehovah the God of your ancestors – the God of AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob – has sent you to them. That has been My Name through the ages, and it’s how I should be remembered from generation to generation.

16 ‘So, go and gather the elders of the children of IsraEl, then tell them that Jehovah, the God of your ancestors, has appeared to you. He’s the God of AbraHam, the God of IsaAc, and the God of Jacob. [And tell them that] He said: I have looked [down] and [seen] all the bad things that are happening to you in Egypt. 17 And tell them that I will take them away from their oppression in Egypt into the land of the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Pherezites, Gergeshites, Evites, and Jebusites… a land that is flowing with milk and honey. 18 And then they will listen to what you have to say.

‘After that, you and the elders of IsraEl must go to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and tell him this: The God of the Hebrews has called us, so we’re going on a three-day journey into the desert to offer a sacrifice to our God. 19 However, I know that Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) won’t let you go [unless he sees] a mighty hand [of power]. 20 So I will raise My hand and strike the Egyptians with all the wonders that I [wish to show] to them… and then he will allow you to leave.

21 ‘I will also make [My] people look good in the eyes of the Egyptians, so that when you escape, you won’t leave empty handed. 22 Women will ask their neighbors and landlords for clothing, and for gold and silver [jewelry], which you will then put on your sons and your daughters… so you will plunder the Egyptians.’

Chapter 4

1 Then Moses asked: ‘But what if they don’t listen to me and do what I tell them to do? Or, what if they say, God hasn’t appeared to you… what should I tell them then?’

2 So the Lord asked him: ‘What do you have in your hand?’

And he replied: ‘My walking stick.’

3 Then [the Lord] said: ‘Throw it on the ground.’

Well, when he threw it on the ground it became a snake, and Moses ran from it.

4 And after that, the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, reach out and grab it by the tail.’

So [Moses] reached out and grabbed it by the tail, 5 and it became a walking stick in his hand once again. [And God continued]: ‘That’s why they will believe you when you say that the God of your ancestors has appeared to you… the God of AbraHam, and of IsaAc, and of Jacob.’

6 Then the Lord told him: ‘Now, put your hand inside [your robe and touch] your chest.’ So he reached inside and touched his chest; and when he brought his hand out, it was [as white] as snow. 7 Then [the Lord] said: ‘Now, put your hand back in and touch your chest once more.’ So he reached in and touched his chest, and when he brought it out, its color had returned to the regular shade of his flesh.

8 [Then the Lord said]: ‘So, if the first sign doesn’t make them listen to you and believe, the second sign will. 9 But if they still won’t listen to you or believe after these two signs, then draw some water from the river and pour it out on the dry ground… and the river water will turn into blood.’

10 Then Moses said to the Lord: ‘I beg you Lord; I’ve not been good at this in the past, and I’ve not become any better at it since You’ve started talking to your servant… I’m a poor speaker and I talk slowly!’

11 And the Lord asked Moses: ‘Who gave man his mouth? Who made both those who can hear and the deaf, as well as those who can see and the blind? Wasn’t it Me… God? 12 Now, go on, and I will open your mouth and tell you what to say!’

13 But Moses continued: ‘I beg you Lord, send someone who is more capable!’

14 Well, this made the Lord very angry with Moses, so He said: ‘Look; isn’t Aaron the Levite your brother? I know that he’ll speak for you… look, he’s coming to meet you, and when he sees you, he’ll be jumping for joy. 15 Then you must talk to him and put My words into his mouth, and I’ll open both of your mouths and tell you what to say. 16 Let him speak to the people for you… he’ll serve as your mouth and you will be the things of God to him. 17 So now, take this walking stick that turned into a snake in your hands and work miracles with it!’

18 Well thereafter, Moses returned to His Excellence (his father-in-law), and said: ‘I’m going to visit my brother in Egypt to see if he’s still living.’

And His Excellence said to Moses: ‘Go in health.’

Well, after some time, the king of Egypt (possibly Kamose) died. 19 And the Lord said to Moses (while he was still in Midian): ‘Now go… leave for Egypt, because those who wanted to kill you are dead.’

20 So Moses took his wife and children, mounted them on his animals, and returned to Egypt. Moses also carried along his walking stick [through which he had received power] from God.

21 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘When you return to Egypt, consider at all the miracles that I’ve given to you, then you must perform these things before Pharaoh. However, I will make him hard-hearted and he will still refuse to send the people away. 22 so you must tell Pharaoh, This is what Jehovah has said: IsraEl is My firstborn, 23 and I’ve told you to send My people away so they can serve Me; therefore, if you won’t send them away, {Look!} I will destroy all your firstborn!’

24 Well, [during their journey], a messenger of Jehovah met them along the way at an inn, and he wanted to kill [Moses’ son]. 25 But SepPhoran grabbed a [sharp] stone and cut off her son’s foreskin. Then she fell at his feet and said: ‘See… the blood of my son’s circumcision is flowing!’ 26 So because she said, ‘The blood of my son’s circumcision is flowing,’ he left.

27 Then the Lord told Aaron: ‘Now, go into the desert to meet Moses.’ So he went and met him at the Mountain of God, and they kissed each other. 28 And thereafter, Moses told Aaron everything that the Lord had said, why he was being sent, and of all the things that he’d been instructed to do.

29 So Moses and Aaron went and gathered the elders of the children of IsraEl, 30 and Aaron told them everything that God had said to Moses; then he performed the miracles before the people… 31 and the people believed and were happy, because God was visiting the children of IsraEl and He had seen how they were being oppressed. So the people all bowed to their faces before him.

Chapter 5

1 Well after that, Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, ‘This is what Jehovah the God of IsraEl, said: Send My people away, so they can hold a feast to Me in the desert.’

2 And Pharaoh asked: ‘Just who is this Jehovah, that I must pay attention to anything He has to say and send the children of IsraEl away? I don’t know Jehovah, and I’m not letting IsraEl go!’

3 So [Moses and Aaron] said: ‘The God of the Hebrews has called us to Him, and we’re going on a three-day journey into the desert to [offer] sacrifices to our God Jehovah; otherwise, we’re afraid that He might strike us and we’ll die!’

4 But the king of Egypt replied: ‘Why are you, Moses and Aaron, trying to keep people from doing their work? Now, go back and just do your jobs!’

5 Then Pharaoh said [to his people]: ‘{Look!} There are huge numbers of them and we can’t allow them to slack off from doing their work!’ 6 And as the result, Pharaoh gave orders to those who were in charge to tell their supervisors 7 not to give the people any straw for brick-making as they did the day before and three days before that. He said, ‘Let them gather and carry the straw for themselves! 8 However, they must maintain the quota for the daily brick making… don’t let up on them, because they’re lazy! Why, they came here demanding that we must allow them to [go out and] offer a sacrifice to their God. 9 Therefore, make the men’s work much harder, so they’ll pay attention to that instead of to idle chatter!’

10 Well, the taskmasters and the supervisors acted quickly, and they told the people, ‘This is what Pharaoh says: I’m not going to give you straw anymore. 11 Go get it yourselves! Take it from wherever you can find it… but you must still make the same number of [bricks]!’

12 So the people were scattered all over the land of Egypt as they gathered stubble for straw. 13 And the taskmasters kept pushing them, saying, ‘You aren’t meeting the quotas you had when [we were providing] the straw.’ 14 And then the supervisors who were assigned over the children of IsraEl by Pharaoh’s governors were whipped… and they were asked: ‘Why aren’t you meeting your brick-making quotas as you did yesterday and three days ago?’

15 Well as the result, the children of IsraEl’s supervisors went to see Pharaoh, and asked him: ‘Why are you treating your servants this way? 16 You don’t give us any straw, but you tell us to make bricks anyhow. And now {Look!} your servants have been whipped! Are you going to allow your people to be injured?’

17 And he said to them: ‘You’re lazy and you’re slackers! For you said, Let us go and offer sacrifices to our God. 18 Now, go to work instead, because you won’t be given any straw… but you must meet the same quota of bricks.’

19 Well, the children of IsraEl’s supervisors realized that they were in a tight situation, since they’d been told that they still had to deliver the same daily quota of bricks. 20 So when they saw Moses and Aaron coming to meet them (just after they’d left Pharaoh), 21 they said: ‘May God look down on you and judge you, because you’ve made us so hated by Pharaoh and his servants that you’ve put the sword into their hands to kill us!’

22 Then Moses turned to Jehovah, and said: ‘I beg You, O Lord; Why have You caused trouble for these people, and why did You send me? 23 For from the time that I went to Pharaoh to speak in Your Name, he’s made things harder for these people… and You still haven’t taken Your people away.’

Chapter 6

1 And Jehovah replied to Moses: ‘Now you’re going to see what I will do to Pharaoh; for he will indeed send them away… with a strong hand and a hard pitch he’ll THROW them out of his land!’

2 And God said to Moses: ‘I am Jehovah. 3 I’m the One who appeared to AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob, and I was their God. However, I didn’t show them My Name Jehovah 4 when I established My sacred agreement with them [and promised] to give them the land of the CanaAnites… the land where they were visitors and living as strangers.

5 ‘Now, I’ve heard the groaning of the children of IsraEl over the oppressive ways that the Egyptians are keeping them in slavery, and I’ve remembered the sacred agreement [that I made] with them. 6 So, go and tell the children of IsraEl that I am Jehovah and that I will lead them out of the tyranny of the Egyptians and free them from slavery. I will pay their ransom with a hard pitch and a great judgment, 7 then I’ll take them to be My people and I’ll be their God… and they’ll know that I am Jehovah their God who freed them from the tyranny of the Egyptians. 8 Then I’ll bring them into the land that I reached out to give to AbraHam, IsaAc, and Jacob… I’ll give it to them as their inheritance, for I am Jehovah!’

9 So, that’s what Moses then went and told the Sons of IsraEl. However, they wouldn’t listen to Moses, because of their fear and their hard work. 10 So the Lord told Moses: 11 ‘Go and tell Pharaoh the king of Egypt to send the children of IsraEl out of his land!’

12 And Moses replied to the Lord, saying: ‘Look, the children of IsraEl didn’t listen to me, so how will I get Pharaoh to listen to me? Besides, I’m not a good speaker.’

13 So the Lord spoke to [both] Moses and Aaron and told them to order Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) to send the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

14 Now, these were the family heads of each of the houses of [IsraEl at the time]: The sons of ReuBen (IsraEl’s firstborn) were Enoch, PhalLus, AsRon, and Charmi. They were ReuBen’s children.

15 The sons of SimeOn were JemuEl, JaMin, Aod, Jachin, SaAr, and Saul (the son of a Phoenician woman). These were SimeOn’s children.

16 The sons of Levi (and the family heads) were Gedson, CaAth, and MeraRi. And Levi lived to be a hundred and thirty-seven years old.

17 The sons of Gedson (and the family heads) were LoBeni and Semei.

CaAth’s sons were 18 AmBram, IshSaAr, ChebRon, and Ozie. And CaAth lived to be a hundred and thirty-three years old.

19 The sons of MeraRi (and the family heads) were MoOli, and Omusi.

20 Now, AmBram married his cousin JochaBed (the daughter of his father’s brother), and she gave birth to Aaron, Moses, and MiriAm (their sister). AmBram [died] when he was a hundred and thirty-two years old.

21 The sons of IshSaAr were KorAh, Naphec, and Zechri. 22 And the sons of OziEl were MisaEl, EliShaphan, and Segri.

23 Then Aaron married EliShaBeth, the daughter of AminAdab and the sister of NaAsson, and she gave birth to Nadab, AbiUd, EliEzer, and IthaMar.

24 KorAh’s sons were Asir, ElKana, and AbiAsar. These were KorAh’s children.

25 Aaron’s son EliEzer married one of the daughters of PhutiEl, and she gave birth to Phineas. These are the heads of the family of the Levites, by their generations.

26 And this is Aaron and Moses, who were told by God to use His power to bring the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

27 So, this is what they went and said to Pharaoh the king of Egypt (before Aaron and Moses brought the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt) 28 on the very day that the Lord spoke to Moses. 29 For the Lord told Moses: ‘I am Jehovah! So, speak to Pharaoh the king of Egypt and tell him whatever I say to you.’

30 But Moses replied to the Lord: ‘Look, I’m not a good speaker; so how will I get Pharaoh to listen to me?’

Chapter 7

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Look! I’ve made you a god to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron is your Prophet. 2 So, tell Pharaoh everything that I’ve told you to say through your brother Aaron… tell him that he must send the children of IsraEl out of his land! 3 However, I will make Pharaoh hardhearted, then I will bring many signs and wonders to the land of Egypt; 4 but Pharaoh will still refuse to listen to you. Then I will lay My hand upon Egypt and bring My people the children of IsraEl out of their land by My power and with a great vengeance. 5 And all the Egyptians will know that I am Jehovah, and that I stretched out My hand toward Egypt and brought the children of IsraEl out of their midst.’

6 So Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded them.

7 Now, Moses was eighty years old, and his brother Aaron was eighty-three years old when they spoke to Pharaoh.

8 Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron: 9 ‘If Pharaoh says that you must give him a sign or perform a miracle; tell your brother Aaron to throw his walking stick on the ground in front of Pharaoh and his servants, and it will become a snake.’

10 So when Moses and Aaron went in [and stood] before Pharaoh and his servants, they did just as the Lord had instructed them. Aaron threw his walking stick before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a snake. 11 However, Pharaoh brought in all the Egyptian wise men, warlocks, and soothsayers, and they used their magic to do the same thing… 12 they each threw down their walking sticks and they became snakes. But then, Aaron’s walking stick swallowed down their walking sticks.

13 Nevertheless, Pharaoh’s heart became hard and he refused to listen to what Jehovah had instructed them to say. 14 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, Pharaoh’s heart has become hard and he won’t let the people go. 15 So, approach Pharaoh when he goes down to the river tomorrow morning and meet with him there on its bank. Then take [Aaron’s] walking stick that turned into a snake, 16 and tell [Pharaoh] that Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has sent you to him, and that He says, Send My people away so they can serve Me in the desert! Look, you haven’t listened to Me so far, 17 but this is how I’m going to let you know that I am the Lord!

‘[Then tell him]: Look; I’m going to slap the water with this walking stick in my hand, and the river water will change into blood. 18 Then all the fish in the river will die and it will stink, and the Egyptians won’t be able to drink water from the river.’

19 And the Lord continued: ‘Then tell your brother Aaron to take his walking stick and hold his arms out over all the water in Egypt (over its rivers, canals, ponds, and any standing water) and they will turn into blood. This blood will be throughout the entire land of Egypt… even in their pottery and wooden jars!’

20 So Moses and Aaron did just as the Lord commanded them. [Aaron] held out the walking stick and slapped the river right there in front of Pharaoh and his servants, and all the river water changed into blood. 21 Then all the fish in the river died and the river had a foul odor, so the Egyptians couldn’t drink water from it. And there was blood throughout the entire land of Egypt.

22 However, the Egyptian soothsayers used their magic to do the same thing. So the heart of Pharaoh became hard and he wouldn’t listen to them… which is just what the Lord said [would happen]. 23 Then Pharaoh turned around and went back into his palace without looking at anything.

24 Well, the Egyptians had to dig [pits] around the river to find drinking water, because they couldn’t drink the water from the river. 25 And Jehovah’s conquest of the river lasted for seven days.

Chapter 8

1 Then the Lord told Moses, ‘Now go to Pharaoh [again] and tell him that this is what Jehovah has said: Send My people away, so they can serve Me. 2 And if you don’t send them away, {Look!} I will fill your land with frogs… 3 the river will teem with frogs, and they’ll get into your houses, into your bedrooms, and onto your beds. [They will be] in the homes of your citizens, in the homes of your servants, on your dough, and on your ovens. 4 They will also climb on you, your servants, and your people.

5 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Now, tell your brother Aaron to raise his arms with his walking stick in his hand over the rivers, canals, and pools, to bring up the frogs.’

6 So Aaron held his arms out over the waters of Egypt and brought up the frogs; and the frogs that he brought up covered the whole land of Egypt.

7 Well, the Egyptian soothsayers used their magic and they too brought frogs upon the land of Egypt.

8 But then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘Pray to Jehovah for me and ask Him to take the frogs away from my people and from me. Then I will send [the children of IsraEl] away to offer their sacrifices to Jehovah.’

9 And Moses said to Pharaoh: ‘Tell me exactly when I should pray for the frogs to disappear from you, your servants, and your people, [for that’s when they will leave] you, your people, and your houses. However, they will remain in the river.’

10 And [Pharaoh] replied: ‘Tomorrow morning.’

Then [Moses] said: ‘It will be just as you’ve said… and then you will know that there is no [God] other than Jehovah. 11 For the frogs will be removed from you, your houses, your villages, your servants, and your people. However, they will remain in the river.’ 12 And at that, Moses and Aaron left Pharaoh.

Then Moses called to Jehovah and asked Him to remove the frogs, as Pharaoh had requested. 13 And Jehovah did what Moses asked… the frogs died in the houses, villages, and fields. 14 Then they gathered them in piles, which caused the whole land to stink.

15 Well, when Pharaoh saw that there was some relief, his heart became hard again, and he didn’t listen to the things that they told him that Jehovah had said. 16 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, tell Aaron to take his walking stick in his hand and to hit the dirt on the ground; then fleas will cover the men and animals throughout the entire land of Egypt.’

17 So Aaron stuck out his walking stick and hit the dirt on the ground, and fleas covered the men and the animals… there were fleas on the ground everywhere!

18 Well, the soothsayers tried to use their magic to do the same thing and bring out the fleas, but they were unable to do so. However, the fleas covered both the men and the animals. 19 So the soothsayers said to Pharaoh: ‘This is the finger of God!’

But Pharaoh’s heart was hardened and he wouldn’t listen to them and do as Jehovah had said. 20 So the Lord said to Moses, ‘Get up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh as he’s going down to the water. Then you must tell him that this is what Jehovah has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me in the desert. 21 For if you won’t let My people go, {Look!} I’m going to send stable flies to you, your servants, your citizens, and into your homes. The houses of the Egyptians will be filled with stable flies wherever they live in the land. 22 [But this time], I will create a marvelous difference in the land of Gesem, where My people are living… there’ll be no stable flies there. Then you will know that I am Jehovah, the God of the whole earth, 23 when I create a difference between My people and yours! This is going to happen in your land tomorrow!

24 Well, the stable flies came in huge numbers and they got into the houses of Pharaoh, his servants, and everyone in the land of Egypt… the land was virtually destroyed by stable flies! 25 So Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron [again] and said: ‘Now, go and offer a sacrifice to Jehovah your God… [but do it] here in this land.’

26 However, Moses said: ‘We can’t do that, because the things we will sacrifice to Jehovah our God are considered disgusting by the Egyptians. So if we sacrifice such things in front of the Egyptians, they will stone us. 27 Rather, let us travel three days into the desert, and we will offer our sacrifices to Jehovah our God there, just as our Lord told us.’

28 Then Pharaoh said: ‘Well, you can go and sacrifice to your God in the desert; but don’t go too far… and pray to Jehovah for me!’

29 And Moses said: ‘Now I will leave you and pray to God, so that the stable flies will leave your servants and your citizens tomorrow. But Pharaoh… don’t deceive me again and then refuse to send the people away to sacrifice to Jehovah.’

30 So Moses left Pharaoh and he prayed to God; 31 and Jehovah did just as Moses said… He removed all the stable flies from Pharaoh, his servants, and his citizens. 32 However, Pharaoh’s heart became hard once again and he wouldn’t send the people away.

Chapter 9

1 So the Lord told Moses: ‘Go to Pharaoh and tell him that this is what Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me! 2 If you don’t send My people away and if you prevent them from going, 3 {Look!} the Lord will touch the cattle in your fields – the horses, burros, camels, bulls, and sheep – and many will die! 4 I will also show a marvelous difference between [the way I will treat] the cattle of the Egyptians and the cattle of the children of IsraEl. None of those that belong to the children of IsraEl will die.’

5 Then God told him when this would happen. He said, ‘I will bring it on the land tomorrow.’

6 And the next day, cattle that belonged to all the Egyptians died, but none of the children of IsraEl’s cattle died. 7 And when Pharaoh saw that none of the cattle that belonged to the children of IsraEl died (not one), his heart became even harder; so he refused to let the people go.

8 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying: ‘Moses should take handfuls of furnace ashes and throw them into the sky before Pharaoh and his servants, 9 so it can blow like dust over the entire land of Egypt. Then the men and animals throughout all of Egypt will break out with blisters.’

10 So Moses carried furnace ashes before Pharaoh and threw them into the sky… and they caused blisters to break out on both the men and their animals.

11 Well, the soothsayers were no longer able to stand before Moses, because they were also covered with blisters like everyone else in the land of Egypt. 12 But Jehovah made Pharaoh’s heart even harder, so he wouldn’t listen to them and do what the Lord told him to do.

13 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Get up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh, then tell him that this is what Jehovah the God of the Hebrews has said: Send My people away so they can serve Me. 14 For I’ve been sending all My plagues into your heart and into the hearts of your servants and your people, so you will know that there isn’t anyone else like Me in the entire earth. 15 And now I’m going to raise My hand to strike you and kill your people, wiping them off of the earth. 16 For the very reason that you’ve been allowed to live is so that I might display My strength through you, and so that My Name might be advertised throughout the whole world!

17 ‘You’ve taken great pains to keep My people and to not let them go… haven’t you? 18 So look! At this same time tomorrow I will cause a hailstorm that will be the worst that Egypt has seen since the time it was founded. 19 Hurry and gather your cattle, as well as everything else that you have in the fields… all the men and cattle that you can find in the fields. For if they don’t go inside a building, the hail will hit them and kill them!

20 So those servants of Pharaoh who were afraid of what the Lord said brought their cattle into their homes. 21 And those who didn’t pay any attention to what the Lord said left their cattle in the fields.

22 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Raise your hands to the sky, and there will be a hailstorm throughout the entire land of Egypt… on the men, the cattle, and all the plants that are growing on the ground.’

23 So Moses raised his hands to the sky, and Jehovah sent hail, thunder, and lightning that rolled around on the ground. And this hail from Jehovah rained throughout the entire land of Egypt. 24 There was hail and there was lightning mixed with hail… it was the greatest hailstorm to hit Egypt in the [history of] that nation! 25 The hail landed all over the land of Egypt – on the men, the animals, and the grass in the fields – and it broke all the trees in the fields. 26 But in the land of Gesem where the children of IsraEl were, there was no hail.

27 So Pharaoh sent for Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘I’ve sinned this time. Jehovah is righteous, and my people and I are wicked. 28 Pray to Jehovah for me and have Him stop the thunder, lightning, and the hail; then I will send you away and you won’t have to [live here] anymore.’

29 And Moses said to him: ‘After I leave the city, I will raise my hands to Jehovah, and the thunder, lightning, hail, and rain will stop… then you will know that the earth belongs to Jehovah. 30 However, I know that you and your servants still don’t fear Jehovah.’

31 Well, [Egypt’s] flax and barley was all destroyed, because the barley was fully-grown and the flax had seeds. 32 However, the wheat and rye hadn’t been damaged, because they came up later.

33 Then Moses left Pharaoh and [walked] out of the city. And when he raised his hands to Jehovah, the thundering ended, and the rain and hail stopped falling.

34 But when Pharaoh saw that the rain, hail, and thundering had stopped, he continued to sin. He hardened his heart and the hearts of his servants. 35 And it was because of this hardened heart that Pharaoh refused to send the children of IsraEl away, as Jehovah had instructed him through Moses.

Chapter 10

1 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and said: ‘Go to Pharaoh [again], because I’ve hardened the hearts of him and his servants so I could bring these signs upon them. 2 [I did this] so you could tell your children and your children’s children of the many ways I’ve mocked the Egyptians through the wonders I’ve brought upon them, so that they would know that I am the Lord.’

3 Then Moses and Aaron went before Pharaoh and said to him: ‘This is what Jehovah, the God of the Hebrews, says: How much longer will you refuse to respect Me? Send My people away, so they can serve Me! 4 But if you won’t send My people away; {Look!} at this same time tomorrow, I will bring huge amounts of locusts to all your borders. 5 They will cover the entire land, so that you won’t be able to see the ground. They will eat everything that the hail has left for you, and chew up every tree that you still have growing in the land. 6 Your houses, the houses of your servants, and all the houses throughout the land of Egypt will be filled with them. It will be something that neither your fathers nor their ancestors have seen from their time until this day.’

Then Moses turned and left Pharaoh. 7 And Pharaoh’s servants said to him: ‘How much longer are you going to allow them to be a snare to us? Send those people away so they can serve their God! Don’t you realize that Egypt is [being] destroyed?’

8 So they went and brought Moses and Aaron back to Pharaoh, and he said to them: ‘You may go and serve Jehovah your God… but, who will be going with you?’

9 And Moses replied: ‘We will be taking the young and the old, along with our sons, daughters, sheep, and bulls, because this is a feast of Jehovah.’

10 Then [Pharaoh] said to them: ‘May Jehovah be with you. But if I send you away, must I also [send away] all that you own? You have an evil [plan], 11 so [I’m] not going to [allow that]! I’ll just allow the men to go and serve your God, because that’s all you really wanted. Now, throw them out from before the presence of Pharaoh!’

12 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Raise your hands over the land of Egypt and let the locusts come to the land. They will eat every plant on the ground and all the fruit that wasn’t damaged by the hail on the trees!’

13 So Moses raised his walking stick to the sky, and Jehovah sent a south wind [that blew] all day and all night long. Then the next morning, the south wind brought the locusts, 14 sending them throughout the land of Egypt. And there they sat in huge numbers throughout all the borders of Egypt. Never had such locusts been seen before or since! 15 They covered the entire ground and they devastated the land. They ate all the plants off the ground and any fruit in the trees that hadn’t been damaged by the hail… nothing green was left on the trees or in the fields anywhere in the land of Egypt.

16 Then Pharaoh hastily called Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘I have sinned before Jehovah your God and against you. 17 [Please] pardon my sin one more time and pray to Jehovah your God… ask Him to take away this death!’

18 So Moses left Pharaoh and prayed to God; 19 then Jehovah sent a strong wind from the sea that blew in the opposite direction, picking up the locusts and throwing them into the Red Sea… and there wasn’t a single locust left anywhere in the land of Egypt. 20 But Jehovah continued to harden Pharaoh’s heart, so he didn’t send the children of IsraEl away.

21 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Now lift your hands toward the sky and bring darkness to the land of Egypt… a darkness that can be felt.’

22 So Moses raised his hands to the sky, and it stormed throughout the land of Egypt for three days… and the sky became totally black. 23 Well, for the next three days, nobody could see anyone else, so no one even got out of bed. However, all the children of IsraEl had light where they were.

24 Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron, and said: ‘Now, go and serve your God Jehovah… but you must leave your sheep, your cattle, and your belongings here!’

25 However, Moses said: ‘No! You must allow us the burnt offerings and sacrifices that we’re going to offer to our God Jehovah… 26 our cattle will be going with us! We won’t leave a hoof behind, because we’re going to take them to serve Jehovah our God, and we won’t know how we’re supposed to serve Him until we get there.’

27 But Jehovah kept hardening Pharaoh’s heart and he wouldn’t let them go. 28 So Pharaoh said: ‘Get away from me, and be careful not to see my face again, because the next time you appear before me, you’re going to die!’

29 And Moses replied: ‘That’s what you’ve said, so I won’t appear in your presence again!’

Chapter 11

1 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘I’m going to bring one more plague upon Pharaoh and Egypt… and then he will send you away with everything. In fact, he’ll drive you out! 2 Now, go to the people secretly and tell them to ask their neighbors for clothing, silver, and gold jewelry.’

3 Well, Jehovah caused his people to be looked upon favorably by the Egyptians and they were willing to lend things to them, because the Egyptians considered Moses a great man… even greater than Pharaoh and his servants.

4 Then Moses told [the children of IsraEl], ‘This is what the Lord said: About midnight I will be going throughout Egypt, 5 and all the firstborn in the land will die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sits on the throne, to the firstborn of the female slave who sits by the mill, as well as the firstborn of all the cattle. 6 Then a cry will [be heard] throughout the land of Egypt such as has never been heard before and will never be heard again. 7 However, among the children of IsraEl, not even a dog will snarl at a man or an animal. That’s when you’ll see the great difference that Jehovah will make between the Egyptians and IsraEl. 8 For they will then be your servants… they’ll come to [you] and bow, saying, Leave, both you and all the people that you’re in charge of. And that’s when [you’ll] leave.’

9 Now, Moses had left Pharaoh [feeling very] angry. And the Lord told Moses: ‘Pharaoh isn’t going to listen to you anymore, so I’ll now show great signs and wonders in the land of Egypt.’

10 Yes, Moses and Aaron had brought about all these signs and wonders to the land of Egypt and to Pharaoh. But Jehovah kept hardening Pharaoh’s heart, and he wouldn’t listen and send the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt.

Chapter 12

1 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron there in the land of Egypt, and said: 2 ‘This will be your first month. It is to be the first one [in your] year. 3 So tell the whole gathering of the children of IsraEl that on the tenth day of this month, each man should select a lamb for his household (depending on the size of his family). 4 And if there are just a few in his house (too few [to eat a whole] lamb), they may go to [the home of] a nearby neighbor. They are to figure out how many people there will be, and then calculate how much lamb they will eat.

5 ‘So, choose a perfect male yearling lamb from [your herd] of lambs and kids, 6 and keep it nearby until the fourteenth day of this month. Then the whole gathering of the children of IsraEl must slaughter [their lambs] toward the evening, 7 and they must gather the blood and put it on the top and both sides of the doorframes of the houses where they will be eating [the lamb]. 8 Then that night, they must roast the flesh over a fire and eat it with fermentation-free bread and bitter herbs.

9 ‘Now, you must not eat it raw or boiled in water, just roasted over a fire with the head, feet, and extremities. 10 Nothing should be left over until morning, and you shouldn’t break any of its bones. Then any leftovers must be burned in the fire.

11 ‘And this is how you must eat it: With your thighs covered for work, your sandals on your feet, and your walking sticks in your hands. You must eat it quickly, because it is Jehovah’s Passover. 12 For I will go throughout the land of Egypt that night and strike all the firstborn in that land (both the men and their animals), and I will bring My vengeance upon all the gods of Egypt… for I am Jehovah!

13 ‘Now, this blood will be the sign that you are inside of each house; for when I see the blood, I will protect you, and you won’t be a part of the plague of destruction when I strike the land of Egypt.

14 ‘You must always remember this day and keep it as a feast to Jehovah through all your generations… [observance of] this feast will be the law through the ages.

15 ‘You must eat fermentation-free bread for seven days. And starting on the first day, you must remove all the fermentation from your homes. For if anyone eats fermentation between the first and seventh days, that person must be destroyed in IsraEl.

16 ‘The first day will be called holy, and the seventh day will be your holy day, when you aren’t to do any hired work. The only work that you may do will be for the things that you require.

17 ‘You must observe this commandment, because this is the day that I will use My great power to bring you out of the land of Egypt… you must make this day a law through the ages for every generation! 18 You must eat fermentation-free bread from the evening of the fourteenth-day of the first month until the evening of the twenty-first day. 19 Fermentation must not be found in your homes during those seven days, and whoever eats anything with fermentation must have his life cut off from the gathering of IsraEl and he will be self-condemned in the land. This applies to the native residents of your land and your neighbors (converts). 20 Nobody should eat anything that has fermentation… only fermentation-free bread may be eaten in any of your homes.’

21 Then Moses called all the elders of the children of IsraEl and told them: ‘Go find yourselves a lamb (according to your family needs) and slaughter the Passover. 22 Then [cut] bunches of hyssop branches and dip them into some of the blood next to the door, and touch it to the upper part and both sides of the door frame… with this blood that is by the door. Then no one should go outside the door of his house until morning, 23 for the Lord will pass over you [as He] strikes the Egyptians… He will see the blood on the doorframes and the Lord will pass over that door. He won’t allow the destroyer to enter your homes to strike you.

24 ‘Now, keep this as a Law for yourselves and for your descendants through the ages. 25 And when you enter the land that Jehovah has promised to give you, you must keep on doing this. 26 Then if your sons should ever ask, Why are we doing this? 27 You should tell them: The Passover is a sacrifice to Jehovah for when He protected the homes of the children of IsraEl in Egypt and He struck the Egyptians, but [passed over] our homes.’

28 Thereafter, the people bowed to their faces, then the children of IsraEl went and did exactly as Jehovah had instructed Moses and Aaron.

29 Well, it was midnight when Jehovah struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt… from the firstborn of Pharaoh who was sitting on the throne, to the firstborn of the female slave who was sitting in a dungeon, and to the firstborn of all the cattle. 30 So Pharaoh woke up that night (as did his servants and all the Egyptians) and there was a lot of screaming throughout the entire land of Egypt; for someone had died in every home.

31 As the result, Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron that night and told them this: ‘Get up and leave us, both you and the children of IsraEl! Go and serve your God Jehovah as you’ve asked, 32 and take your sheep and bulls with you. But please bless me… I beg you!’

33 All the Egyptian people also urged them to leave their land quickly, because they were saying, ‘We’re all going to die!’

34 So the children of IsraEl took all their bread dough that hadn’t fermented yet and wrapped it in cloths, and carried it on their shoulders. 35 Then, following Moses’ instructions, they asked the Egyptians for clothing, as well as for items of silver and gold. 36 And because Jehovah had caused the Egyptians to view them favorably, they [gave them these things]… so they plundered the Egyptians.

37 Then the children of IsraEl got up and left RaMesse, traveling toward to SocChoth (which included some six-hundred-thousand men on foot) with everything they owned, 38 along with a huge number of others who left with them. This included their sheep, bulls, and many cattle. 39 [And when they got there], they baked the dough that they had brought from Egypt into fermentation-free loaves (there was still no fermentation in the dough), because the Egyptians hadn’t allowed them to stay any longer. For since they had been literally thrown out, they hadn’t been allowed enough time to properly prepare for their journey.

40 Now, though it had been four hundred and thirty years that the children of IsraEl been in the land of CanaAn and in the land of Egypt; 41 the whole army of Jehovah left the land of Egypt that night. 42 And since this was [the night] that they kept watching for Jehovah to bring them out of the land of Egypt; all the children of IsraEl were to observe it as a night of watch to Jehovah throughout all their generations.

43 Then the Lord told Moses and Aaron, ‘This is the Law regarding the Passover: No stranger may eat it, 44 and any slave or servant that you buy must be circumcised before he can eat it. 45 However, visitors and people you hire can’t eat it. 46 It must be eaten in one house, because you can’t carry the flesh outside of the house… and no bones should be broken. 47 The entire gathering of the children of IsraEl must continue to do this.

48 ‘And if any converts come and want to observe the Passover to Jehovah, you must circumcise all their males before they can [partake of] the sacrifice; for thereafter, they will be treated as residents in the land. However, no one who is uncircumcised may eat it. 49 So there will be just one Law, and it will apply to both the native residents and to those who come to be converts among you.’

50 Then the children of IsraEl did exactly as Jehovah had instructed Moses and Aaron. 51 And that was the day Jehovah brought the children of IsraEl out of the land of Egypt with all their armies.

Chapter 13

1 Then the Lord told Moses: 2 ‘All the first-fathered and firstborn that open any womb among the children of IsraEl, whether of men or animals, are to be set aside as holy to Me, for they are Mine!’

3 And Moses said to the people: ‘Remember this day! [It’s the one] when you were brought out of the land of Egypt and out of the house of slavery; for Jehovah brought you out of there with His strong hand. So, fermentation must not be eaten 4 on this day of new grain that you left. 5 And when Jehovah your God brings you into the land of the CanaAnites, Chettites, Amorites, Evites, Jebusites, Gergeshites, and Pherezites, which He swore to your ancestors that He would give you (a land that is flowing with milk and honey), you must perform the same service during this month. 6 You will all eat fermentation-free bread for six days, and the seventh day will be a feast day to Jehovah…  7 so you will eat fermentation-free bread for seven days. Nothing with fermentation may be seen among you, nor may you have fermentation inside all of your borders. 8 And you must say to your sons on this day: This is how Jehovah dealt with me as I was leaving Egypt.

9 ‘Let this always serve as a sign on your hand and as something in front of your eyes to remember, so that Jehovah’s Law will always stay on your [lips]! Because, Jehovah God brought you out of Egypt with His mighty hand. 10 Therefore, each year at this same time and season, you must observe this Law.

11 ‘And when Jehovah your God brings you into the land of the CanaAnites, which He swore to your ancestors that he would give to you; 12 you must set aside every male that opens a womb to Jehovah. This includes those among your flocks and herds of cattle… as many as you have. [All the] males must be [set aside as] holy to Jehovah! 13 However, when it comes to your burros; you must offer a sheep instead… you can’t exchange it, you must buy it back [from Jehovah], and you must buy back every firstborn son.

14 ‘And if your son should ever ask you, Why are we doing this? You must tell him: Jehovah brought us out of Egypt and out of the house of slavery with His mighty hand. 15 And when Pharaoh’s heart became hard and [he refused] to send us away, [God] slaughtered all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the men and the animals. So that’s why we offer every male that opens a womb to Jehovah, and that’s why we buy back all of our firstborn sons.

16 ‘Therefore, may this be a sign on your hand and something that is always fixed in front of your eyes… because Jehovah brought you out of Egypt with His mighty hand.’

17 Well, after Pharaoh had sent the people away, God didn’t lead them toward the land of the Philistines (though it wasn’t far away), because God said: ‘[I’m doing this is to keep] the people from having a change of heart when they see war, and from thereafter returning to Egypt.’ 18 So God led them around the desert toward the Red Sea.

It was the fifth generation of the children of IsraEl that left the land of Egypt. 19 And Moses took JoSeph’s bones along, because [JoSeph] had made the children of IsraEl swear, saying: ‘God will surely visit you, so you must carry my bones back with you.’

20 Thereafter, the children of IsraEl left SucCoth and went to camp at Othom, which is near the desert. 21 God led them there using a tall column of clouds during the day (to show them the way) and a tall column of fire during the night. 22 The column of clouds was there all day long, every day, and the column of fire was always there in front of the people all night long.

Chapter 14

1 Then the Lord said to Moses: 2 ‘Tell the children of IsraEl to turn around and set up camp in front of the village of the Magdol (the Watchtower)… between it and the sea, across from BeEl-SepPhon. Camp there in front of them, next to the sea. 3 For Pharaoh will say to his people, The children of IsraEl are just wandering around in the land, and now they’re boxed in! 4 Then I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after you. So, Pharaoh and his whole army will bring glory to Me, and all the Egyptians will know that I am Jehovah.’ And that’s what happened.

5 Well, a report was carried to the king of the Egyptians that the people had run away. And this changed the hearts of Pharaoh and his servants against the [children of IsraEl], and they started asking, ‘What have we done by allowing the children of IsraEl to go, rather than having them [stay here and] serve us?’ 6 So Pharaoh prepared his chariots and took his [whole army] with him… 7 six hundred of their best chariots, the entire Egyptian cavalry, and all his generals. 8 And it was because Jehovah had hardened the hearts of Pharaoh (the king of Egypt) and his servants that he chased after the children of IsraEl. For the children of IsraEl allowed them the upper hand, 9 and when the Egyptians caught up with them, they found them camped next to the sea.

So, there was all of Pharaoh’s cavalry, chariots, horsemen, and entire army at a village near BeEl-SepPhon. 10 And as Pharaoh approached, the children of IsraEl could see the Egyptians coming up behind them, which terrified them, and they started calling out to Jehovah.

11 And at that, they asked Moses: ‘Aren’t there enough graves in the land of Egypt so that you had to bring us out here to be killed in the desert? What have you done to us by taking us out of Egypt? 12 Wasn’t it enough that we told you back in Egypt to leave us alone so that we could keep on serving the Egyptians? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to have us die here in this desert!’

13 But Moses said to the people: ‘Don’t be afraid; Stand here and watch the salvation that comes from Jehovah through the things that He will do for us on this day. Do you see all those Egyptians today? You won’t see them again in this age, 14 because Jehovah is going to fight for you and bring peace to you!’

15 Then the Lord asked Moses: ‘Why are they shouting to Me? Speak to the children of IsraEl and tell them to continue on! 16 Just lift your walking stick and raise your hands over the sea, and it will split open… then you can [lead] the children of IsraEl across on dry land through the midst of the sea!

17 ‘Then after that, {Look!} I will harden the hearts of Pharaoh and all the Egyptians, and they will chase after you… and that’s when Pharaoh, his army, his chariots, and all his horses will glorify Me. 18 Yes, everyone in Egypt will know that I am Jehovah when I’m glorified by Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horses.’

19 And immediately thereafter, the messenger of God who had been traveling in front of the camp of the children of IsraEl went around to its rear… for the column of clouds moved to the rear and stayed behind them, 20 between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of IsraEl. And as it was standing there between them, it started to get dark… in fact, the night became so black that the [Egyptian army] couldn’t come any closer all-night long.

21 Then when Moses lifted his arms over the sea, the Lord pushed the water back with a strong south wind [that blew] all night long. This dried the seabed and it kept the water divided. 22 So the children of IsraEl walked down through the midst of the sea on dry land, as the walls of water stood to their right and to their left. 23 But then the Egyptians went in and chased after them… all of Pharaoh’s horses, chariots, and horsemen also went [down into] the midst of the sea.

24 Well, it was during the morning watch that Jehovah looked at the Egyptians through the columns of fire and clouds, and [He created] trouble in their camp, 25 for the wheels on their chariots sank to their axels, making them very hard to pull. And the Egyptians started saying, ‘Let’s run from the face of IsraEl, because Jehovah is fighting for them and against the Egyptians!’

26 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Now, stretch your arms out over the sea and let the water fall back into its place… let it cover the Egyptian chariots and their riders.’

27 So Moses stretched his arms out over the sea, and the water returned to its place around daybreak. The Egyptians tried to run from the water, but Jehovah just kept shaking them back into the midst of the sea. 28 It returned and covered the chariots and their riders, along with the whole army of Pharaoh that followed them into the sea, leaving no survivors. 29 Yet the children of IsraEl had been able to cross through the midst of the sea on dry land with the water standing like walls on their right and on their left.

30 So Jehovah saved IsraEl from the hands of the Egyptians that day, and IsraEl could see the Egyptians lying dead on the shore. 31 And after IsraEl had witnessed Jehovah’s mighty hand in the things that He did to the Egyptians, they started fearing Jehovah… trusting in God and in His servant Moses.

Chapter 15

1 Thereafter, Moses and the children of IsraEl sang this song to God:

‘Let us sing to Jehovah;
For He has been glorified.

‘The horses and riders He’s tossed in the sea…
2 He’s been our protector and helper,
And He has brought us salvation.

‘This is my God and I’ll praise Him…
He’s the God of my fathers and I’ll hold Him high.
3 He’s the Lord who crushes with war;
Jehovah is His [Great] Name.

4 ‘Into the sea, He has thrown
The army and chariots of Pharaoh.
It swallowed his best mounted generals,
5 And He covered them up with the water,
Where they sank to the bottom like stones.

6 ‘The strength of Your right hand, O God,
Has now proven its glory.
For, with Your right hand, O God,
You have shattered of all Your enemies.

7 ‘In Your glory, You’ve smashed those who hate us,
As You sent them Your rage,
Which has consumed them like stubble.

8 ‘By the spirit of Your rage, the waters had split…
The waters stood firm, like a wall…
You banked the waves in the midst of the sea.

9 ‘But our enemies said, We will chase them down,
Then divide their things and bring ourselves joy.
We will destroy with our swords…
With our mighty hands, we will beat them.

10 ‘But then, [Jehovah] sent out His wind,
And the sea covered them over…
They sank in the waters like lead.

11 ‘So, who among gods is like You, O Lord…
To whom can You be compared?
For Your holy ways bring glory to You,
And we marvel at all of Your glories.

12 ‘You raised Your right hand and sent wonders,
For the earth has swallowed them down.
13 But You righteously guided those whom You bought
(Those whom You called by Your might)
To the Holy Place of Your rest.

14 ‘But, when the nations heard about this,
They all became quite enraged…
Pangs of birth fell upon the Philistines,
15 And the princes of Edom and Moab,
As well as their chiefs ran away.
They each started to tremble,
And all in CanaAn just melted away.

16 ‘May they shake in fear of the strength of Your arm,
And may they become like the stones, O Lord,
Until all Your people have passed them by…
Until those You’ve purchased have passed them by.

17 ‘Now, take us and plant us in the mountains we’ll inherit,
And in the homes You’re preparing, O Lord…
In the place of safety, prepared by Your hands.
18 For Jehovah reigns through the ages,
And through the ages of ages.

19 ‘Pharaoh’s horses sank into the sea,
Along with his chariots and horsemen.
Then, they were covered with water,
Where the children of IsraEl had walked on dry land
Through the midst of the sea.’

20 Then the Prophetess MiriAm (Aaron’s sister) picked up her tambourine, and all the other women went to get their tambourines, and they started dancing. 21 MiriAm led them, singing:

‘Let us sing to Jehovah;
For, He has been glorified.
The horses and riders He’s tossed in the sea…’

22 Well thereafter, Moses led the children of IsraEl away from the Red Sea and into the desert of Sur. But after [traveling] through the desert for three days, they hadn’t found any water to drink. 23 And when they got to MerRha (Bitterness), they couldn’t drink the water there, because it was bitter. (That’s why [Moses] named that place Bitterness).

24 Then the people started complaining about Moses, asking: ‘What are we going to drink?’

25 So Moses called to Jehovah, and the Lord showed him a tree, which [Moses] threw into the water… and the water became sweet. This is also the place where [God] gave him His Laws and decisions, and where He showed His approval. 26 For [the Lord] said: ‘If you will listen to the voice of Jehovah your God… if you’ll do the things that please Him, obey His Commandments, and keep all His Laws; I won’t bring any of the [plagues] upon you that I brought upon the Egyptians. For I am Jehovah, the God who provides you with healing.’

27 Then when they arrived at AiLim, they found twelve springs of water and seventy branching palm trees, so they camped there by the water.

Chapter 16

1 Thereafter, they left AiLim, and the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl traveled into the Sin Desert, which is between AiLim and Sinai. And on the fifteenth day of the second month from their leaving the land of Egypt, 2 the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl [once again] started complaining to Moses and Aaron. 3 They told them: ‘We would rather have died [with those who were] struck by Jehovah in the land of Egypt, back when we could sit by the stew pots and eat all the bread we wanted! But now you’ve brought us out into this desert just to starve us all to death!’

4 And the Lord said to Moses: ‘Look! I will rain bread upon you from the skies. Then the people will go out and gather their allotment for each day, so I can test them to see whether they will follow My Law. 5 For on the sixth day they must gather all that they can, and it will be double that which they could gather on the previous days.’

6 So Moses and Aaron spoke to the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl, saying: ‘This evening you will realize that it was Jehovah who brought you out of the land of Egypt; 7 and tomorrow morning you will see the glory of the Lord, since He has heard you complaining against Him… and what are we that you should keep complaining about us?’

8 Then Moses continued, saying: ‘This evening, Jehovah will give you meat to eat; and in the morning, He will provide enough bread to satisfy you. For Jehovah has heard all the complaints that you have against us… yet, what are we? You aren’t complaining against us, but against God!’

9 And Moses said to Aaron: ‘Now, tell the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl that they must go over and approach God, since He has heard all their complaining!’

10 So after Aaron said this to them, they all turned and faced the desert… and the glory of the Lord appeared in a cloud! 11 Then the Lord spoke to Moses and said: 12 ‘I’ve heard all the children of IsraEl’s complaining, so tell them: This evening you will eat meat, and in the morning you will have enough bread to satisfy you… and then you will know that I am Jehovah your God.

13 Well that evening, a [huge flock] of quail flew in and covered the camp. 14 And the next morning, after the dew around about the camp had dried; {Look!} on the surface of the desert (lying there like frost) was small things that looked like white coriander seeds. 15 And when the children of IsraEl saw them, they asked each other: ‘What is this (heb. man-nah)?’ Because, they didn’t know what it was. And Moses told them: 16 ‘This is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat… it’s what Jehovah has approved. So, every man should gather a third of a bushel for each person in his family. You and those who are living with you should go out and gather it.’

17 And that’s what the children of IsraEl did. Though some gathered more and others gathered less, 18 the ones who gathered the full third of a bushel didn’t have any leftovers, and those who gathered less never went hungry. So they all gathered just what their households required.

19 Then Moses told them: ‘Now, none of you may save any of this for the next morning.’

20 However, many of them wouldn’t listen to Moses, and they tried to keep it until the following morning… but by then it had worms and it smelled… and all of this irritated Moses. 21 So each morning, everyone would collect all that they needed, and everything melted after the sun went down. 22 Then on the sixth day, they gathered twice as much as they needed… two-thirds of a bushel per person.

Well, all the chiefs of their gathering thereafter came and reported all that was happening to Moses. 23 And Moses asked: ‘Didn’t the Lord tell us that tomorrow is the Sabbath… a holy [day of] rest to Jehovah? Therefore, bake all that you can bake and boil all that you can boil, so that the leftovers can be stored for tomorrow!’

24 [So on the sixth day], they stored the leftovers until the next morning, just as Moses told them, and it didn’t stink and there weren’t any worms in it.

25 [And then the next day], Moses said: ‘This is what you must eat today; for since this day is a Sabbath to Jehovah, you won’t find any of it out in the fields. 26 You must collect it for six days, but because the seventh day is a Sabbath, there won’t be any then.’

27 However, on the seventh day some of the people still went out to collect it, but they couldn’t find any. 28 So the Lord said to Moses: ‘How long are they going to fail to listen to My commands and [obey] My laws? 29 Look; I’ve given them this day as the Sabbath, and I gave them enough bread to last for two days on the sixth day. So from now on, they must all just sit there in their homes… don’t not allow anyone to leave his place on the seventh day!’

30 Well thereafter, the people kept the Sabbath on the seventh day.

31 The children of IsraEl called this [food], manna. It looked like white coriander seeds and tasted like crackers and honey.

32 Then Moses said, ‘This is what Jehovah has commanded: We are to collect a third of a bushel of manna and set it aside so that future generations can see the bread that you ate in the desert after Jehovah led you out of the land of Egypt.’ 33 And he told Aaron: ‘Take a gold pot and fill it with a full third-of-a-bushel of manna, then store it away for God and keep it for future generations.’

34 And just as the Lord told Moses, Aaron stored it away as a testimony.

35 So the children of IsraEl ate manna for forty years. They ate manna until they got to the land of Phoenicia. 36 Now, a homer (a third of a bushel) was a tenth of an ephah (three bath measures).

Chapter 17

1 Thereafter, the entire gathering of the children of IsraEl left the Sin Desert, following the order of their camps, and the Lord told them to camp in RaphiDin. However, there was no water for the people to drink in this place, 2 so they started shouting at Moses and saying, ‘Give us water to drink!’

And Moses asked them: ‘Why are you shouting at me, and why are you asking Jehovah to prove Himself?

3 Well, the people were very thirsty, and they complained again to Moses, saying, ‘What’s the point? Did you bring us up out of Egypt to kill us along with our children and cattle with thirst?’

4 Then Moses called to Jehovah, and said: ‘What should I do with these people… before long they will stone me!’

5 And Jehovah replied to Moses: ‘Go before the people and bring along some of their elders. Then take the walking stick with which you slapped the [Nile] River, into your hands 6 and go to the rock in the dry place (Horeb) where {Look!} I’ll be standing before you; [then you must] strike the rock and water will pour out of it, so the people will [have something to] drink.’

Well thereafter, Moses did this in front of the sons of IsraEl. 7 And then he named that place, ‘Proof and Shouting,’ because of all the shouting of the children of IsraEl, [as they demanded that] Jehovah prove Himself. For they had asked, ‘Is Jehovah among us or not?’

8 Then the Amalekites came to fight against IsraEl in RaphiDin. 9 And Moses said to JoShua: ‘Choose your best men and form battle lines against the Amalekites tomorrow. {Look!} I will be standing on top of the hill with the walking stick of God in my hands.’

10 So JoShua did just as Moses told him. He went out and formed his army in battle lines against the Amalekites; then Moses, Aaron, and Or went up to the top of the hill. 11 Well, whenever Moses raised his arms, IsraEl would be superior; but when he let them down, the Amalekites were more successful. 12 But soon Moses’ arms got tired, so they found a rock and had him sit on top of it; then Aaron and Or supported his arms on either side, holding them there until the sun set. 13 So JoShua drove the Amalekites and all their people away by slaughtering them with swords.

14 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘Write this in a scroll, so it will be remembered. Tell JoShua that I’m going to totally blot out all memory of the Amalekites from under the skies!’

15 Well after that, Moses built an altar to Jehovah there, and he named it ‘Jehovah is My Refuge,’ 16 because Jehovah was secretly waging war against all generations of the Amalekites.

Chapter 18

1 Meanwhile, His Excellence (the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law) heard of all that Jehovah had done for his people IsraEl by bringing them out of Egypt. 2 So His Excellence [went to see Moses], bringing along Moses’ woman SepPhoran (since [Moses] had sent her 3 and her two sons away). [One of his sons] was named Gersam (Visitor), because, as [Moses] said: ‘I was a visitor in a strange land,’ 4 and [the other was named] EliEzer (My God is my Helper), because as [Moses] said: ‘The God of my fathers is my helper and He rescued me from the hands of Pharaoh.’

5 His Excellence took [Moses’ family] to him in the desert… to his camp on the Mountain of God. 6 And when Moses was told, ‘Look! His Excellence (your father-in-law) is coming and he’s bringing your wife and two sons with him,’ 7 Moses went out to meet them. Then [Moses] bowed low before his father-in-law and kissed him, then they hugged each other, and he led them into his tent, 8 where Moses told his father-in-law about everything that Jehovah had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for IsraEl’s sake, as well as about all the things that had happened to them along the way, and of the way Jehovah had rescued them from the hands of Pharaoh and the Egyptians.

9 Well, His Excellence was amazed by all the good things that Jehovah had done for them by rescuing them, 10 and he said: ‘Praise Jehovah, because He rescued them from the hands of Pharaoh and the Egyptians! 11 Now I now know that Jehovah is higher than all [other] gods; for He did this to those who were treating [the children of IsraEl so poorly].’

12 Then His Excellence presented whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for God, and Aaron and all the elders of IsraEl came to eat bread before God, along with Moses’ father-in-law.

13 Well, the next morning, Moses sat down to [serve as] judge for the people, and they [kept coming to] him all day long. 14 Then when His Excellence noticed all that [Moses was doing], he asked, ‘Why are you sitting there all by yourself as the people come to you from morning until night?’ 15 And Moses replied: ‘The people are coming to me to receive God’s decisions. 16 So, whenever they have a disagreement, they come to me and I judge each [case]. I teach them the Laws of God and [I judge by] His Laws.’

17 However, Moses’ father-in-law told him: ‘You aren’t handling this thing right, 18 for this will just wear you down… and your people will get tired of it too. You won’t be able to keep on doing this all by yourself. 19 So listen to me; I’m going to tell you what to do, and God will be with you.

‘You can be [the one] who [leads] the people in matters that pertain to God, and you can take their problems before God. 20 You should also [teach] them God’s [ways] and His Laws, and show them how to act and the things that they should be doing. 21 But keep an eye out among the people for capable, righteous men who fear God… righteous men who hate pride. Then appoint them as chiefs over thousands, chiefs over hundreds, chiefs over fifties, and chiefs over tens… 22 let them spend all their time judging. And whenever a problem is too great, then they should bring it to you. Let them help you to free up your [time] by judging the smaller cases. 23 And if you do that, God will strengthen you, you will [have time to take care of more important matters], and these people will [return to their tents] more peacefully.’

24 Well, Moses paid attention to his father-in-law’s suggestion and did everything that he said. 25 He chose capable men throughout all of IsraEl and made them chiefs of thousands, chiefs of hundreds, chiefs of fifties, and chiefs of tens. 26 Then they judged the people, and whenever a matter was too weighty, they brought it to Moses, while they judged the lighter matters.

27 After that, Moses [said goodbye] to his father-in-law, and [His Excellence] returned to his own land.

Chapter 19

1 Well, it was on that same day (in the third month after the children of IsraEl left the land of Egypt) that they arrived in the Sinai desert. 2 They had left RaphiDin and traveled through the desert to Sinai, and IsraEl set up camp there in front of the mountain.

3 Then Moses climbed the Mountain of God, and God called to him on the mountain, saying: ‘You must say this to the house of Jacob and report [My words] to the children of IsraEl: 4 You have seen all that I’ve done to the Egyptians, and how I lifted you as on the wings of eagles and drawn you close to Me. 5 Now, if you will listen to what I say and keep My Sacred Agreement, you will be a special people to Me that will be higher than all other nations. And because the whole earth is Mine, 6 you will become My holy nation and a Kingdom of Priests.

‘Now, [go] and tell this to the children of IsraEl!’

7 So Moses went back and called the people’s elders, then he laid out what God had said exactly as He said it. 8 And all the people replied unanimously, saying, ‘We will listen to and obey everything that God has said!’ And Moses reported their words to God.

9 Then the Lord told Moses: ‘{Look!} I’m going to come to you in a column of clouds so the people can hear Me speaking to you. And after that, through the age, they will believe you.’ Then Moses reported back to the people about what the Lord had said.

10 Thereafter, the Lord said to Moses: ‘Go down and give these solemn instructions to the people: They must cleanse themselves both today and tomorrow, and they must wash their clothes. 11 Make sure they are ready by the third day, because on the third day, the Lord will descend upon Mount Sinai before all the people. 12 Also, make sure that they keep themselves some distance from the mountain. Tell them: Be careful not to step on any part of the mountain or to touch any part of it. For anyone who touches the mountain will surely die. 13 No hand should touch it, and anyone who does so must be pelted with rocks or shot through with arrows… whether it’s a man or an animal, [he or she] must not be allowed to live! People may only climb the mountain after the voices, trumpeting, and clouds are gone.’

14 So Moses went down the mountain to the people. He then cleansed them and [had them] wash their clothes. 15 He told them: ‘Get ready… and for the next three days, no [man] should even get close to a woman!’

16 Then, as the morning of the third day dawned, there were voices, there was lightning, there was a dark cloud on Sinai, and they heard a trumpeting sound that was so loud that the people in the camp were trembling. 17 And that’s when Moses led the people out of the camp to meet God.

Well, they were all standing there, close to the camp, 18 and then the whole mountain started to smoke, because The God had descended upon it in fire… and the smoke kept rising as though it [was coming from] a furnace, which left the people in awe.

19 Then the trumpeting got even louder as Moses spoke, and God started answering him with a voice… 20 yes, Jehovah descended to the top of Mount Sinai and He called to Moses, [telling him to come to Him] on top of the mountain! So Moses went up, 21 and God then said this to Moses: ‘Go down and warn the people [again] not to approach to see God, for this will cause many of them to [die]. 22 And make sure that any Priests who come close to Jehovah God have cleansed themselves, so He doesn’t [have to] destroy some of them!’

23 Then Moses said to God: ‘The people won’t be able to approach Mount Sinai, because You warned us, saying, Set boundaries around the mountain and make it holy.’

24 And at that, the Lord told him: ‘Now, go down [the mountain] and bring Aaron back up here with you. But don’t allow the Priests or the people to force their way up to God, for fear that Jehovah will destroy them.’

25 So Moses went [back] down to the people and reminded them [once again].

Chapter 20

1 Then the Lord said all of this:

2 ‘I am Jehovah… I’m your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt and out of the house of slavery. 3 So, you must have no gods other than Me.

4 ‘You must not make images for yourselves of anything in the skies above, on the earth below, or of things that live in the water or under the ground. 5 You must not bow before them or serve them; for I, Jehovah your God, am a zealous God, and I bring the sins of the ancestors upon the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of those who hate Me. 6 Yet, I am merciful to the thousands who love Me and keep My Commandments.

7 ‘You must not misuse the Name of your God Jehovah; for Jehovah your God will not forgive those who misuse His Name.

8 ‘Keep the Sabbath day and make it holy. 9 You may work and get everything done in six days. 10 However, the seventh day is the Sabbath of your God Jehovah, and you must do no work… not you, your sons, your daughters, your male servants, your female servants, your oxen, your burros, any of your cattle, or any strangers that are visiting among you. 11 For after Jehovah made the skies, the lands, the seas, and everything in them, He rested on the seventh day. Then Jehovah blest the seventh day and made it holy.

12 ‘Honor your father and mother, as Jehovah your God commanded you, so that things may go well for you and that you may live a long time in the land that Jehovah your God is giving to you.

13 ‘You must not commit murder.

14 ‘You must not commit adultery.

15 ‘You must not steal.

16 ‘You must not testify falsely against your neighbor.

17 ‘You must not desire your neighbor’s woman, his house, his field, his male servant, his female servant, his ox, his burro, any other animal, or anything else that belongs to your neighbor.’

18 Well all the while, the people were being distracted by all the thunder and lightning, the sounds of the trumpets, and the smoke on the mountain; and everyone was afraid and backing far away. 19 So they told Moses: ‘You talk to us… don’t let God talk to us, because we’re afraid that we might die!’

20 And Moses said to them: ‘Be courageous! For The God came here to test you and to put the fear of Him into you, so you won’t sin.’ 21 However, the people just kept backing away.

Then Moses went into the darkness where God was. 22 And Jehovah said to Moses, ‘This is what you must say to the house of Jacob and what you must report to the children of IsraEl: Now you have seen Me speaking to you from the sky; 23 so, don’t make gods of silver or gold for yourselves. 24 You may make an Altar to Me from the dirt in whichever place that I record My name, and that’s where you must sacrifice your whole burnt offerings, as well as the peace offerings of your sheep and calves, and that’s where I will come to you and bless you.

25However, if you should choose to build a stone Altar to Me, don’t use cut stones; because, if you use tools on them, they will become unclean. 26 And don’t build any steps up to My Altar, so that the naked [parts of your bodies] will be seen from [below].’

Chapter 21

1 ‘Now, these are the Laws that you are to show to them:

2 ‘If you buy a Hebrew slave, he may only serve you for six years; for in the seventh year, he must be set free without cost. 3 If he comes alone, he must leave alone; but if his woman comes with him, his woman must also leave with him. 4 However, if his master gives him a woman and she gives birth to sons or daughters; she and her children belong to the master, so [the slave] will leave alone. 5 But if the slave should say, I love my master, my woman, and my children, so I don’t want to leave free; 6 his master should bring him to the judgment-seat of God and take him up to the door, where he will use an awl to punch [a hole through] his ear against the doorframe, [to signify] that he will serve [his master] through the age.

7 ‘And if anyone sells his daughter as a house slave; she may not be sent away as other female slaves are released. 8 For if she has been involved with him and if she thereafter hasn’t been found pleasing by him, he may only set her free… he may not sell her to some foreigner after that. 9 And if he has obtained the woman for his son, he must treat her as his own daughter. 10 But if he has taken her for himself, he must never deprive her of her clothing, her needs, or her companionship with him. 11 If he refuses to do any of these three things for her, she must be set free at no cost.

12 ‘If any man strikes another man and kills him, he must absolutely be put to death. 13 But if such a thing should happen by accident, or if God [allows the situation that causes the death]; I will provide a place to which the killer can run. 14 However, if someone who lies in wait and plans to murder his neighbor runs to that refuge, you must take him [far] from My Altar and put him to death.

15 ‘Whoever beats his father or mother must be put to death, 16 and whoever curses his father or mother must die.<